New Zealand's booming economy and serene lifestyle continue to attract migrants from Asia and other parts of the world.
The country is expected to have 40,000 migrants within the year. About one percent of the population, many of which are white-collar workers, have left their homeland to pursue promising career prospects.
With the rising number in immigration, New Zealand sees record-high house prices that prompted the Reserve Bank of New Zealand to increase interest rates. The Labour Party has called for the government to reduce the influx of immigrants.
Reports said Labour is doing more effort to score political points ahead of the New Zealand election in September.
In 2013, immigration has soared with new arrivals from India, China and other Asian countries. Other people from the UK and the U.S. have come to New Zealand hoping a better life. According to reports, data due to be released by the end of June are expected to reveal high immigration rates in more than 10 years.
Based on a year-to-year comparison, the country had a net gain of 4,776 in 12 months ending in April 2013. The annual net gain is currently 4,400 compared to the previous 31,900. Statistics New Zealand said the previous annual net migration had been higher between July 2002 and December 2003, according to reports. Net migration peaked at 42,500 in May 2003.
Infometrics Managing Director Gareth Kiernan said the increase in migration was mainly driven mainly by strengthening labor market in New Zealand. Compared to Australia's "struggling" economy and other labor markets overseas, New Zealand is an attractive place to work.
He noted although migration is not a concern if people have jobs waiting for them, the rise in migration raises questions, particularly about the housing market.
Records showed a portion of overseas-born Kiwis has increased in the past two decades. Almost a quarter of New Zealanders born outside of the country have risen to 16 percent in 2013.
According to reports, skilled migrants are among one of the major drivers of growth in the country. The New Zealand government welcomes skilled migrants since it seeks to encourage diversity in the workforce.