OPINION: The statistics on the front page of your paper of Wednesday December 4 don't quite give an accurate picture of population trends.
The European population of Southland has indeed risen dramatically and stands at 79,731.
The 2006 census however had as an ethnicity option, ''New Zealander'', a choice mercifully not available in 2013.
In 2006 13,860 Southlanders or fully 16.5 per cent gave their ethnicity as New Zealander.
Assuming these are nearly all European, then the total European population usually resident in Southland would have been about 78,000. The 2013 census therefore shows a 2.1 per cent increase in the European population and not 14.6 per cent.
It is pleasing to see the ethnic diversity increasing in our community. Each culture brings its own contribution to Southland.
- (Live Matches)