Otago's population grows by 8600

Otago's population has grown by more than 8600 since 2006, this year's census has shown.

Detailed figures released today reveal that the province is now home to 202,467 people, up from 193,800.

Queenstown-Lakes has had the biggest population growth, from 22,959 to 28,224, while Dunedin's population has increased from 118,683 to 120,249.

Central Otago's population has grown from 16,644 to 17,895.

The Clutha district has grown slightly, from 16,839 to 16,887 and it is a similar story in the Waitaki, where the population has grown from 20,223 to 20,826.

National picture

New Zealand's population is now 4.24 million and is getting older and more ethnically diverse, this year's census has shown.

Statistics New Zealand this morning released key census information on the country's population, its mix of ages and sexes, and where people choose to live.

The census, held on March 5 this year, required everyone in the country to provide key information about their households, jobs and income.

The overall population was 4,242,048 people - up 214,101 on th last census in 2006 - but there were fewer children under 15 years.

Meanwhile, the number of people aged 50-69 years showed a large increase.

"The New Zealand population is aging, with the latest census results showing the median age of the population is 38 years, just over two years older than at the last census seven years ago," Government statistician Liz MacPherson said.

"As well as being older, the New Zealand population is also now more diverse, with an increasing Asian population, in particular."

Almost one out of eight people living in New Zealand were Asian, up from about one in 11 in 2006.

Nearly two-thirds of Asian people, or 307,233, live in the Auckland region, where over one in five people are of Asian ethnicity.

This year's census was the first since 2006, after the Christchurch earthquakes disrupted plans to hold a census in 2011.

More than 5.6 million individual and dwelling forms were collected, with about 2 million of those completed online.

Today's release of key information would be followed by regular, detailed releases over the next 18 months. The census results also show that Hindi is now the fourth most common language in New Zealand, after English, Maori, and Samoan.

The country's total number of dwellings, both occupied and unoccupied, increased by just over 118,000 since 2006, to top 1.7 million.

Nearly 30 per cent of this increase was in the Auckland region.

While there were more dwellings, a lower proportion of households owned their homes.

"The rate of home ownership fell to just under 65 per cent at the 2013 census, compared with almost 67 per cent at the 2006 census," Ms MacPherson said.

The number of unoccupied dwellings increased sharply since 2006, up more than 26,000 or 16.4 per cent.

"Almost 40 percent of this increase was in Canterbury, probably because of people leaving their dwellings after the 2010 and 2011 earthquakes," Ms MacPherson said.


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