Diversified Immigration Paths

The way in which new PRC Chinese migrants use the New Zealand immigration program differs from that of other migrants. To show the distinct immigration pathways of PRC migrants, one must see their migration in a comparative framework. Recent data show that in 1997-2015, China was one of the top eight immigrant source countries for New Zealand. Table 11.1 shows that the number of residence approvals under the New Zealand Residence Programme was 765,179, of which 13.7 % (104,484) were for PRC migrants. This puts the PRC second after the UK, which had 17.8 % (136,384) approvals.

As the table shows, south Africa and the uK have the greatest number of residence approvals under the skilled category (78.8 % and 65.3 %, respectively) of residence approvals, while China has 35.3 % approvals.10 However, China has a large percentage of residence approvals under the business category (10.3 %), which is much higher than the figure for the UK (2.2 %) and South Africa (0.7 %).11

Table 11.1 also shows that China has the greatest number of residence approvals under the parent category (22.8 %; 23,799), followed by the Fiji

Table 11.1 Residence approvals by nationality (top eight immigrant source countries) and immigration stream/category, 1997-2015

Nationality

Total

approvals

Total

family

sponsorship

Tamily sponsorship subcategories

Skilled

Business

Other

Spouse

Parents

Dependent

child

Siblings and adult child

Asia

China

104,484

50,478 (48.3 %)

18,688 (17.9 %)

23,779 (22.8 %)

  • 2106
  • (1.9%)

4433 (4.2 %)

36,874 (35.3 %)

10,713 (10.3 %)

6419 (6.1 %)

India

80,950

  • 26,473
  • (32.7%)

13,292 (16.4 %)

9357 (11.6 %)

  • 932
  • (1.1%)
  • 2484
  • (3.0%)

43,348 (53.5 %)

346 (0.4 %)

10,783 (13.3 %)

South Korea

23,959

5345 (22.3 %)

3099 (12.9 %)

  • 1045
  • (4.4 %)
  • 363
  • (1.5%)
  • 353
  • (1.4%)

11,967 (50.0 %)

  • 5421
  • (22.6%)

1226 (5.1 %)

Philippines

39,640

  • 8606
  • (21.7%)

5928 (15.0 %)

4413 (11.1 %)

  • 1122
  • (2.8 %)
  • 392
  • (1.0%)
  • 24,865
  • (62.7%)
  • 39
  • (0.1 %)
  • 6130
  • (15.4%)

Sub-total

249,033

90,902 (36.5 %)

41,007 (16.5 %)

38,594 (15.5 %)

4433 (1.8 %)

7662 (30.8 %)

117,054 (47.0 %)

  • 16,519
  • (6.6 %)

24,558 (9.8 %)

% Asia

32.5

34.6

28.3

55.0

24.2

41.6

31.3

58.9

24.3

Pacific

Fiji

44,753

  • 19,544
  • (43.7%)

8262 (18.5 %)

5973 (13.3 %)

  • 1014
  • (2.3 %)
  • 3046
  • (6.8 %)

20,236 (45.4 %)

691 (1.5 %)

  • 4282
  • (9.6 %)

Samoa

35,735

15,190 (14.5 %)

6626 (18.5 %)

  • 1987
  • (5.5%)

5557 (15.5 %)

648 (1.8 %)

553 (1.5 %)

0

  • 19,992
  • (56.0%)

Sub-total

80,488

34,734 (43.1 %)

14,888 (18.5 %)

  • 7960
  • (9.9%)
  • 6571
  • (8.2 %)
  • 3694
  • (4.6%)

20,789 (25.8 %)

  • 691
  • (0.8 %)

24,274 (30.1 %)

% Pacific

10.5

13.2

10.2

11.3

35.9

20.0

5.5

2.5

24.0

Other

UK

136,384

37,189 (27.2 %)

  • 25,111
  • (18.4 %)
  • 9547
  • (7.0%)
  • 921
  • (0.7%)
  • 1346
  • (1.0%)

89,035 (65.3 %)

  • 3013
  • (2.2 %)

7147 (5.2 %)

(continued)

Nationality

Total

approvals

Total

family

sponsorship

Tamily sponsorship subcategories

Skilled

Business

Other

Spouse

Parents

Dependent

child

Siblings and adult child

South Africa

61,723

9451 (15.3 %)

3232 (5.2 %)

4413 (7.1 %)

  • 740
  • (7.8 %)
  • 879
  • (1.4%)

48,624 (78.8 %)

  • 444
  • (0.7%)
  • 3204
  • (5.2 %)

Sub-total

198,107

46,640 (23.5 %)

28,343 (14.3 %)

  • 13,960
  • (7.0%)
  • 1661
  • (0.8 %)
  • 2225
  • (1.1%)

137,659 (69.5 %)

  • 3457
  • (1.7%)
  • 10,351
  • (5.2 %)

% other

25.9

17.7

19.5

19.9

9.1

12.1

36.9

12.3

10.2

Total 8 countries

527,628

172,276

84,238

60,874

12,665

13,581

275,502

20,667

59,183

% resident approvals

100

32.7

16.0

11.5

2.4

2.6

52.2

3.9

11.2

Total all countries

765,179

262,456

145,019

70,212

18,285

18,413

373,531

28,050

101,142

% resident approvals

100

34.3

19.0

9.2

2.4

2.4

48.8

3.7

13.2

% from 8 countries

69.0

65.6

58.0

86.7

69.3

73.8

73.8

73.7

58.5

Source: Immigration New Zealand

(13.3 %; 5973) and India (11.6 %; 9357). This is probably due in large part because filial piety is an important value in Chinese culture, even today, including among Chinese overseas (Bedford and Liu 2013). Chinese like to live with their parents, either in the same household or in the same locality, so many PRC migrants sponsor their parents to immigrate immediately after they have settled in New Zealand.

New PRC migrants often use other family sponsorship subcategories such as the spouse category. The countries with the largest number of migrants in the spouse category are Fiji (18.5 %) and Samoa (18.5 %), followed by the UK (18.4 %) and China (17.9 %). Samoa, which has relatively small numbers in all the above categories, has the largest number of migrants in the dependent child category (15.5 %).

The data show that new PRC migrants follow various routes to New Zealand. Most are in the skilled and parent categories, and quite a few are in the business category. This reflects the fact that China’s growing economy has played an important role in bolstering its nationals’ financial ability to obtain permanent residence in New Zealand.

Social Indicators: Age-Gender

 
Source
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