Migrants like NZ, but don't make friends easily
Nearly all recent migrants are satisfied with life in New Zealand, but the majority don't make Kiwi friends, a survey shows.
At the last Census, 37 per cent of Auckland's population was born overseas and the Immigration Settlement Monitoring Programme Migrants Survey 2011, released today shows 55 per cent of foreigners had none or one New Zealand mate.
The survey, by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE), also found 22 per cent of migrants didn't even socialise with any New Zealanders, compared to 41 per cent who did.
Those less likely to hang out with Kiwis were from north Asia and Southeast Asia, while the British, Irish and North America were most likely.
The survey showed the top reason for migrants moving to New Zealand was to be with family, a partner or friends, followed by the relaxed pace of life and the environment.
The country's clean, green environment was the aspect that was most likely to exceed migrants' expectations.
Being made welcome and safety from crime also rated highly. But the country didn't impress with its quality of housing, salaries and cost of living.
Despite this, around 70 per cent of recent migrants wanted to stay permanently in New Zealand and 89 percent would recommend New Zealand to friends and family.
Labour and Immigration Research head Vasantha Krishnan said the research showed labour market participation for recent migrants was generally positive as 70 per cent were in paid employment.
"This is an encouraging sign that migrants are integrating well into the labour force," she said.
The purpose of monitoring programme is to improve the ministry's understanding of migrants' settlement and the labour market.
Survey results are also used by Immigration New Zealand to develop and present information used to attract potential migrants.
The majority of people surveyed came from north Asia, followed by Britain and Ireland, and the rest of Europe.
Thirty-one per cent of migrants were between the ages of 25 and 29, while 24 per cent were between the ages of 25 and 29.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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