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Māori population approaches 1 million, at 17% of total NZ population

Summarised by Centrist

NZ’s Māori population is growing slowly, but steadily and has surpassed 900,000, Stats NZ has announced. 

The Māori population figure of 904,100 (in New Zealand) has been announced by Stats NZ as it readies its 2023 Census data for a May 29 release.

The figure is a 1.5% increase on the December 2022 figure.

Stats NZ says the Māori population naturally increased 12,600 since last year. 

According to Stats NZ, only a small percentage of the population increase was due to migration and “inter-ethnic mobility” which is when people change their ethnic identification to Māori.

There are slightly more wāhine Māori (Māori women) than men, with 453,800 to 450,300 tānē (males), Stats NZ reports. 

The total New Zealand population now numbers 5.27 million – an all-time high. 

Editor’s note: Defining Māori identity has evolved significantly over time. Modern definitions now incorporate self-identification and cultural elements. 

Changes in policy over the past several decades and societal perspectives have broadened the Māori population, highlighting the subjectivity and politics inherent in these classifications. 

There are questions about the political motivations behind some of these shifts because they affect resource allocation and the portrayal of Māori identity in public discourse.

See here, and here for more information. 

Read more over at NZ Herald

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