Economic Overview of New Zealand and What it means for International Students

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Aishwarya Bhatnagar
Study Abroad Expert
Updated on Oct 25, 2021 12:20 IST


New Zealand GDP grew by 5.1% annually in 2021 on an average the economic activities saw a boom in June 2021 in comparison to March 2021. This increase can be attributed to the growth in the service industry sector, primary industry, and goods producing industries, according to Statistics New Zealand. Travel and Tourism Industry declined and services grew at a slower speed in 2020 and 2021 in comparison to the year 2018. However, given the current situation - Coronavirus COVID - 19, the New Zealand economy has taken a fall in GDP by 1.6% in the first quarter of 2020 compared to the previous quarter.

Economic Overview of New Zealand for June 2021 Quarter

The following table throws light on some of the economy related growth numbers of New Zealand as reported in September 2021 for the June 2021 Quarter which is in comparison to March 2021 Quarter. 

New Zealand GDP Key Points 

Statistics (June 2021) 

GDP increase 


Per Capita GDP Growth 


Service Industry Growth 


Primary Industries Growth 


Growth of Goods Producing Industries 


Real Gross National Disposable Income Increase 


Average Annual GDP (June 2021) Increased by 


It an be noted that, the economic activities rose by 2.8% in June 2021 in New Zealand in comparison to just 1.4% rise in March 2021 quarter. In terms of average annual GDP it can be noted that there was a growth of 5.1% upto June 2021.

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New Zealand has been earlier ranked by the World Bank as the best country in the world to start a business or start-up in 2015, and the second easiest country to do business overall the same year. There are few restrictions on starting, owning, and operating a business in NZ. Over the past two decades, government policies and practices have transformed New Zealand from an agricultural economy to an industrialized and free-market economy that is competing globally. This growth has increased real incomes and expanded the technological capabilities of the industrial sector.

What it means for international students?

Since COVID 19 brought with it restrictions and lockdowns one after the other, what was witnessed included a negative impact on travel, transportation, international student arrivals and collectively a decline in exports with -9.5% loss in the June 2021 quarter. Education and training also declined by -1.4% up to the June 2021 quarter, reason being students studying online from their respective countries. What this entirely means for international students is a couple of possibilities like:

  • International students will study from their own hometowns and not travel.
  • There will be another loss of 5% to the New Zealand's economy if students are not called back.
  • A lot of students may not be given permission to travel to New Zealand because of vaccinations opinion clashes.
  • Students might not incur expenditure on travel allowance and accommodation in New Zealand if they attend their classes from their own countries.

More or less, the advantage still lies with the students rather than with New Zealand. Even if travel restrictions open up specially for international students' arrival, there will still be a chaos depending upon quarantine rules upon arrival and COVID Test results too. Students might not be in favour of taking chances as mostly classes are being held online with fewer students attending classes in person. To conclude, New Zealand’s visa and immigration laws make it a lucrative study abroad destination which for now come with restrictions for international students.

The popular job sectors of New Zealand continue to create a steady demand for fresh professionals and the outlook was projected to remain favourable. However, one cannot overrule the impact of the COVID-19 on the jobs market also because in June 2021 quarter it was noted that the services sector had a major role to play in the economy followed by other industries. Students can have a look at the following graph to check the industry wise growth as recorded for June 2021 quarter:


You can read here for more details on New Zealand Government Statistics.

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About the Author
Aishwarya Bhatnagar
Study Abroad Expert

An experienced and passionate writer, with a love for literature, Aishwarya Bhatnagar has 3 years of experience - working in and around study abroad. With a postgraduate degree in Linguistics from Delhi University, ... Read Full Bio



4 years ago

Respected sir, I'm doing BMM (beachlor of mass media) in Mumbai. I'm last year student and will complete my BMM in May2018. Then I'm looking VFX & Animfor masters in abroad so which is the best country for my course Canada or Australia or New Zealand? I'm looking for good study as well as Job too.

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