One in seven New Zealanders now Maori

01:46, Dec 03 2013

The Maori population is growing, young, and becoming more academic, Statistics New Zealand says.

Since the 2006 census, the Maori population grew 5.9 per cent, outpacing growth of the New Zealand population as a whole, which grew by 5.3 per cent.

"One in seven people usually living in New Zealand in 2013 belongs to the Maori ethnic group," government statistician Liz Macpherson said.

"Maori are a youthful population, but as a group are growing slightly older. The median age of Maori in the 2013 census was 24 years, about one year older than at the last census."

The number of Maori aged under 15-years-old continued to grow, but as a proportion of the total Maori population, the group decreased slightly since 2006.

The largest increase in the Maori population since 2006 was in the working-age group of 15 to 64-years-old - particularly those aged 30 and over.

More Maori are also achieving formal qualifications at university, MacPherson said.

Since the 2006 census, the number of Maori with a bachelor's degree or higher as their highest qualification increased by 50 per cent.

However, just over one in five Maori could hold a conversation about everyday things in te reo Maori, a drop of 4.8 per cent from 2006.

Every person in the country on March 5, census day, was required to provide information to the Government about their lives, from where they lived to how much they money they made.

The bulk of the information is being released today.


Fairfax Media