22 Jun 2016

Migration continues to hit record levels

1:04 pm on 22 June 2016

Migration is continuing to hit record levels, with more people arriving in New Zealand than leaving.

Official figures show a net gain of 68,400 people in the year to May.

A woman with a backpack pulls a suitcase through an airport.

Photo: 123RF

It's the 22nd month in a row the annual net gain of migrants has been at record levels.

On a monthly basis, the number of people coming to live here, or return home, held steady at 5500.

Migration peaked at 6200 in November last year.

ANZ Bank senior economist Phil Borkin said 5500 was still a decent number and showed New Zealand was an attractive place to come and live.

He didn't expect any pull-back at this stage.

"The New Zealand economy is still performing very well...there's some possibilities that migration turns south... the biggest factor there would be if the Australian economy started to show stronger signs of growth - particularly in the labour market...we don't have that at the moment," he said.

A total of 193,600 visitors arrived last month, up 10 percent from May 2015, setting a new May record.

More people came here from India, China and Britain last month - and the number of Chinese visitors outnumbered Australian visitors for only the second time.