New Zealand's annual net gain of migrants hit another record high in October, rising to 70,300, surpassing the previous peak of 70,000 set in September, Statistics NZ says.

Annual migrant arrivals were 126,100, a new annual record, beating the record 125,600 set in the September year, while annual migrant departures were 55,800, from 55,700 in September.

"The record annual net gain in migration was driven by the increase in migrant arrivals,"Jo-Anne Skinner, population statistics manager at Statistics NZ, said. "At the same time, migrant departures decreased, adding to the high net gain."

The number of visitors in the year to the end of October 2016 rose to 3.42 million, up 12 per cent on a year earlier and another record. 260,200 visitors arrived in the month, up 14 per cent on a year ago and a new record for the month.


New Zealanders heading abroad also set new records, with 2.55 million overseas trips made in the year to the end of October, up 7 per cent on the year earlier.

The data from Statistics New Zealand was delayed due to earthquake damage to Statistics House in Wellington. It was also published in abbreviated form, with limited data sets compared to normal.