Wellington: A growing number of Indian students’ arrival in New Zealand has bolstered the country’s annual net migration figure to a new record, a media report said on Friday.
According to Statistics New Zealand, the country’s annual permanent and long-term migration showed a record net gain — the number of arrivals over departures — of 59,600 migrants till July this year, resulting from 117,100 arrivals and 57,500 departures, Xinhua reported.
The figure was boosted by students from India and China, according to stuff.co.nz. The website said that after Australia the next biggest group of migrants was from India, with three-quarters on student visas.
The arrival of Indians increased 56 percent to 13,800, with 75 percent having student visas.
The growing number of Indian students reflect a stronger Indian economy and visa rules allowing students to work while studying in New Zealand, stuff.co.nz cited Wellington Institute of Technology chief executive Chris Gosling as saying.
Indian students often applied to stay on but they still had to meet the immigration skills short-list, he added.
July also set a record with the highest ever monthly net gain in migrants at 5,700, surpassing the previous record of 5,400 migrants set this year in January.
The influx of migrants would put a strain on all public services, including hospitals, and demand for housing, especially in the overheated market of Auckland, the opposition New Zealand First party said.