Statistics New Zealand are saying that in less than 25 years Asians will be on the brink of out numbering Europeans in Auckland.

And Pacific islanders will become the third largest ethnic group in the city followed by the smallest distinctive ethnic group, Maori.

Altogether the non European ethnicities will outnumber Europeans by 2038.

The “Asian” category lumps together Indians, Chinese and other Asian ethnicities such as Filipinos.

 Ethnic Communities Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has welcomed the new statistics which show  that overall New Zealand will become more ethnically diverse in the future.

“New Zealand prides itself on being a welcoming and ethnically harmonious country. We have a high standard of living and we offer a safe haven for those fleeing conflict elsewhere in the world,” he said. 

“It is pleasing to see that all of New Zealand can share the benefits of ethnic diversity, not just in our main centres,” Mr Lotu-Iiga said. 

“We can learn so much when we interact with other ethnic communities and the mix of cultures, language and heritage adds to the rich cultural make-up of our society.” 

The figures show that averaged across three different population growth rates, Auckland could have 1,026,967 Europeans; 762,468 Asians; 379,300 Pacific Islanders and 277,367 Maori by 2038.

That would mean that nearly 60% of the city would be non European.


Statistics have issued a number of cautions with their forecasts – they say the groupings of ethnicities are not mutually exclusive because people can and do identify with more than one ethnicity.

The projections indicate probable outcomes based on different combinations of fertility, mortality, migration, and inter-ethnic mobility assumptions.

These projections are not predictions.

Statistics say they should be used as an indication of the overall trend, rather than as exact forecasts.

Overall across the whole country Statistics says:

  • The Māori population will make up nearly 20 percent of the total New Zealand population in 2038, compared with nearly 16 percent in 2013
  • The  Asian population will make up 21 percent, compared with 12 percent in 2013
  • The Pacific population will make up 11 percent, compared with 8 percent in 2013
  • The European or Other’ population will make up 66 percent, compared with 75 percent in 2013.


But under the medium projection, Auckland will account for about three-fifths of New Zealand’s total population growth between 2013 and 2038. Partly reflecting the current ethnic distribution of population, Auckland is projected to account for a similar share of both Asian and Pacific population growth over the same period, about two-fifths of the ‘European or Other’ population growth, and about one-quarter of the Māori population growth.