The Social Report monitors outcomes for
the New Zealand population. This section contains background
information on the size and characteristics of the population to
provide a context for the indicators that follow.
Population size and growth
New Zealand's resident population reached 4 million in April
2003 and was estimated to be 4.17 million at the end of December 2006.
During 2006, the population grew by 45,100 or 1.1 percent.
This rate of growth was higher than that recorded in 2005 (36,700 or
0.9 percent) and higher than the average annual increase during the
10-year period to December 2006 (40,300 or 1.0 percent).
Under 2004-based medium population projection assumptions, the
population is expected to grow by an average of 0.8 percent per year
between 2006 and 2011. Natural increase (births minus deaths) will
account for four-fifths of this growth, and net migration the remaining
fifth. Assuming net migration of 10,000 people per year after that, the
growth rate is expected to slow to an average of 0.7 percent per year
for the next 15 years. Such a growth rate would add around 603,400
people to the population between 2006 and 2026.5
Figure P1 Estimated and projected resident
Source: Statistics New Zealand
Note: All three projections assume medium mortality. The medium
projection series assumes medium fertility and a long-term annual net
migration gain of 10,000