15 Feb 2012

NZ population growth lowest in 11 years

2:03 pm on 15 February 2012

New Zealand's population last year experienced its lowest growth in 11 years.

Statistics New Zealand figures show the estimated resident population grew by 29,600 people.

The natural increase, the excess of births over deaths, was 31,400 - the lowest since 2005.

On top of that, nearly 2000 more people left the country than arrived.

Over the past 20 years, the population has increased annually by an average of 1.2%.

Highest annual growth was 1.9% in 2002 and the lowest 0.6% in 2000.

The estimated resident population of New Zealand is 4.42 million. The population is expected to reach 4.5 million next year.