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New Zealand Country Guide

Explore New Zealand in Oceania

New Zealand with the capital city Wellington is located in Oceania (Oceania, islands in the South Pacific Ocean). It covers some 268,680 square kilometres (about the size of Colorado) with 4,154,000 citizens.

Interactive map of New Zealand

The terrain features predominately mountainous with some large coastal plains. The average density of population is approximately 15 per km². The notable climate conditions in New Zealand can be described as temperate with sharp regional contrasts. Potential natural disasters are earthquakes are common, though usually not severe or volcanic activity.

To reach someone in New Zealand dial +64 prior to a number. There are 1,870,000 installed telephones. And there are 4,700,000 registered mobile phones. The cellular networks commonly support frequencies of 900 MHz. Websites registered in this country end with the top level domain ".nz". If you want to bring electric equipment on your trip (e.g. laptop power supply), note the local power outlet of 230V - 50Hz.

About the flag and history of New Zealand

New Zealand Flag Icon

Blue with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant with four red five-pointed stars edged in white centered in the outer half of the flag; the stars represent the Southern Cross constellation.

The Polynesian Maori reached New Zealand in about A.D. 800. In 1840, their chieftains entered into a compact with Britain, the Treaty of Waitangi, in which they ceded sovereignty to Queen Victoria while retaining territorial rights. That same year, the British began the first organized colonial settlement. A series of land wars between 1843 and 1872 ended with the defeat of the native peoples. The British colony of New Zealand became an independent dominion in 1907 and supported the UK militarily in both world wars. New Zealand's full participation in a number of defense alliances lapsed by the 1980s. In recent years, the government has sought to address longstanding Maori grievances.

Geography Quick-Facts

SummaryContinent: Oceania
Capital: Wellington
Size268,680 square kilometers (km² or sqkm) or 103,737 square miles (mi² or sqmi)
about the size of Colorado
CurrencyName Dollar, Currency Code:NZD
Country Top Level Domain (cTLD).nz
Telephone Country Prefix+64
Mobile Phone Connections4,700,000
Landline Phone Connections1,870,000

Country Position in World Rankings

Information about single country attributes and how these compare against the rest of the world. The information below is compiled with data from 2013. As such, it may differ a bit to the Information above in the text (which is from 2010).


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Area267,710 (sq km)76

People and Society

Value nameValueWorld Rank
Population4,365,113 125
Population growth rate0.85 (%)130
Birth rate13.48 (births/1,000 population)148
Death rate7.25 (deaths/1,000 population)121
Net migration rate2.24 (migrant(s)/1,000 population)39
Maternal mortality rate15.00 (deaths/100,000 live births)144
Infant mortality rate4.65 (deaths/1,000 live births)184
Life expectancy at birth80.82 (years)25
Total fertility rate2.06 (children born/woman)120
Health expenditures10.10 (% of GDP)30
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate0.10 (%)151
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS2,500 132
HIV/AIDS - deaths100 148
Obesity - adult prevalence rate28.30 (%)34
Education expenditures7.20 (% of GDP)22
Unemployment, youth ages 15-2417.30 (%)77


Value nameValueWorld Rank
GDP (purchasing power parity)134,200,000,000 64
GDP - real growth rate2.50 (%)125
GDP - per capita (PPP)30,200 50
Labor force2,402,000 114
Unemployment rate6.50 (%)68
Distribution of family income - Gini index36.20 84
Investment (gross fixed)19.50 (% of GDP)103
Taxes and other revenues36.90 (% of GDP)57
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-5.90 (% of GDP)169
Public debt41.80 (% of GDP)86
Inflation rate (consumer prices)1.20 (%)15
Central bank discount rate5.00 (%)68
Commercial bank prime lending rate6.11 (%)138
Stock of narrow money26,940,000,000 61
Stock of broad money154,600,000,000 46
Stock of domestic credit233,800,000,000 39
Market value of publicly traded shares36,300,000,000 56
Industrial production growth rate1.50 (%)126
Current account balance-6,803,000,000 169
Exports37,730,000,000 63
Imports35,650,000,000 62
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold18,330,000,000 59
Debt - external90,230,000,000 51
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home75,770,000,000 45
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad59,080,000,000 33


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Electricity - production43,400,000,000 (kWh)55
Electricity - consumption38,960,000,000 (kWh)54
Electricity - installed generating capacity9,482,000 (kW)59
Electricity - from fossil fuels30.00 (% of total installed capacity)180
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants56.70 (% of total installed capacity)36
Electricity - from other renewable sources13.30 (% of total installed capacity)14
Crude oil - production49,730 (bbl/day)59
Crude oil - exports45,180 (bbl/day)48
Crude oil - imports90,840 (bbl/day)51
Crude oil - proved reserves96,100,000 (bbl)73
Refined petroleum products - production106,000 (bbl/day)73
Refined petroleum products - consumption148,900 (bbl/day)68
Refined petroleum products - exports2,883 (bbl/day)103
Refined petroleum products - imports46,780 (bbl/day)71
Natural gas - production4,367,000,000 (cu m)52
Natural gas - consumption4,278,000,000 (cu m)64
Natural gas - proved reserves27,640,000,000 (cu m)74
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy39,580,000 (Mt)70


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Telephones - main lines in use1,880,000 60
Telephones - mobile cellular4,820,000 108
Internet hosts3,026,000 34
Internet users3,400,000 62


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Airports122 47
Railways4,128 (km)41
Roadways93,911 (km)46
Merchant marine15 101


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Military expenditures1.50 (% of GDP)101

Data based on CIA facts book 2010 & 2013, wikipedia, national statistical offices and their census releases

List of current world heritage sites

New Zealand Sub-Antarctic Islands
The New Zealand Sub-Antarctic Islands consist of five island groups (the Snares, Bounty Islands, Antipodes Islands, Auckland Islands and Campbell Island) in the Southern Ocean south-east of New Zealand. The islands, lying between the Antarctic and Su ...
Te Wahipounamu – South West New Zealand
The landscape in this park, situated in south-west New Zealand, has been shaped by successive glaciations into fjords, rocky coasts, towering cliffs, lakes and waterfalls. Two-thirds of the park is covered with southern beech and podocarps, some of w ...
Tongariro National Park
In 1993 Tongariro became the first property to be inscribed on the World Heritage List under the revised criteria describing cultural landscapes. The mountains at the heart of the park have cultural and religious significance for the Maori people and ...