Fiscal Impacts of Migrants to New Zealand
An exploratory study in 1997/98 followed by a further study of the fiscal impact of migrants to New Zealand for the 2001/2002 fiscal year.
Migrants for this study were defined as all people born overseas and living in New Zealand, and therefore included people in New Zealand on student and work permits. The ‘fiscal’ impact of migrants is defined as the contribution of migrants to central government revenue less government expenditure attributable to the migrant population.
The findings of the 1997/98 study indicate that migrants generally had a positive net fiscal impact on government expenditure (in the categories described in the Summary), compared with their contributions to tax revenues.
Among other things, the research findings indicated (relating to the 1997/98 fiscal year):
- the fiscal impact of migrants was dominated by their impact on income tax revenue;
- migrants had a positive net fiscal impact, although the size of the impact varied by length of time in New Zealand (related to the income and expenditure items outlined above); and
- there was a positive net per-capita fiscal impact for migrants who were in New Zealand five years or less.
The 2003 study found that migrants had a positive net fiscal impact of $1.7 billion, comprising:
- $5.8bn to government revenue in the form of income tax, GST and petrol, alcohol and tobacco excises.
- $4.1bn of government expenditure comprising education, health, New Zealand superannuation, Work and Income benefits and student allowances.
On an age-adjusted (18 to 64 year-old) per-head basis the fiscal impact of migrants on both revenue and expenditure was similar to that of the New Zealand born. However, both revenue and expenditure for migrants were lower, leaving the net contribution of migrants slightly higher than that of the New Zealand born.
Author: Business and Economic Research Ltd - BERL
All publications in subject category: Immigration - Economic (including labour market)
- Cultivating the Knowledge Economy in New Zealand
- Economic Impacts of Immigration: Scenarios using a Computable General Equilibrium Model of the New Zealand Economy
- Fiscal impacts of immigration 2005/06
- Housing Markets and Migration: Evidence from New Zealand
- Immigrant Selection and the Returns to Human Capital in New Zealand and Australia
- Immigrants in New Zealand: A Study of their Labour Market Outcomes
- Immigrants in the New Zealand Labour Market: a Cohort Analysis using 1981, 1986 and 1996 Census Data
- International Trade Negotiations and the Trans-Border Movement of People: A Review of the Literature
- Labour Market Integration of Recent Migrants in New Zealand
- Labour Market Outcomes for Immigrants and the New Zealand-born 1997-2009
- Literature Review on the Economic Impact of Immigration
- New Zealand Research on the Economic Impacts of Immigration 2005–2010: Synthesis and research agenda
- Productivity and Local Workforce Composition
- Skilled migrants in New Zealand: a study of settlement outcomes
- Skilled Migrants in New Zealand: Employers’ Perspectives
- The Economic Impact of Immigration on Housing in New Zealand 1991–2016
- The Impact of Immigration and Local Workforce Characteristics on Innovation
- The Impact of Immigration on the Labour Market Outcomes of New Zealanders
- The Integration of Highly Skilled Migrants into the Labour Market: Implications for New Zealand Business
- The Labour Market Adjustment of Immigrants in New Zealand