The Māori population in Rotorua grew substantially faster than the total population in the period between 2013 and 2018, according the newly released Statistics New Zealand figures.
The populations counts were part of a special Rotorua release of figures compiled from the 2018 Statistics counts released this week.
The figures show that total population was pretty much level between 2006 and 2013 (at 65,901 and 65,280) but grew by 9.2 per cent between 2013 and 2018 to 71,877.
However, the Māori population grew substantially faster by proportion, going up 22.3 per cent 22,410 in 2013 (22,734 in 2006) to 28,839 in 2018, a 6429 increase in the count.
The figures also showed a significant growth in the number of immigrants who had arrived to live in Rotorua in the three years to 2018. Those who had been in the district for less than one-year account for 7.9 per cent in 2018 compared to 5.6per cent in 2013. The comparative figure for those who had been in Rotorua for one-year was 8.1 per cent (5.1 in 2013); and for two years, 6.2per cent (5.7 per cent).
In measuring the proportion of ethnic groups in the district, the figures show that 40.1 per cent of the population is Māori compared to the proportion for all New Zealand, at 16.5 per cent.
Te reo Māori is spoken vastly more in Rotorua than in New Zealand as a whole – at 12.1 per cent of the population compared to 4 per cent.
Smoking behaviour remains a big health issue in Rotorua – 18.3 of the Rotorua population were recorded as being regular smokers against 13.2 per cent of New Zealand. A greater proportion of Rotorua’s population were, however, recorded as “ex-smokers” at 24.4 per cent compared to 22 per cent and fewer Rotorua people were recorded as “never smoking regularly (57.3 per cent – 64.8 per cent).
The percentage of Māori who were regular smokers was slightly higher in Rotorua at 29.9 per cent (28.3 per cent), but the level of ex-smokers was virtually the same at just over 23 per cent. However, Māori were recorded as “never smoked regularly” at 47 per cent compared to 48.5 per cent.