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Aucklanders blame Asians for house prices

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 15/03/2017

More than half of Aucklanders believe Asians are to blame for soaring house prices, a recent survey shows.

On average, half of the country agreed that Asian people are responsible for rising house prices, but the Auckland and Hamilton regions felt more strongly about this.

The survey was conducted by the Asia New Zealand Foundation.

Kiwis from small towns believe that New Zealand is allowing too much investment from Asia, more than those from larger cities.

This may be due to having less involvement with people from Asian and are more likely to form opinions based upon what they see and hear in the media, the survey states.

"What we hear in the media forms our knowledge... We see stories about foreign investors driving up our average housing price and therefore New Zealanders start to lose respect for Asia and Asian people and they start to treat them differently," an 18-19-year-old Indian man said when surveyed.

Only 51 per cent of New Zealanders were positive about the long- term benefits of immigration from Asia to New Zealand.

"The more we learn we can start to understand how much people from these countries can bring to our country in terms of trade, new skills and technology, and also cultural experiences," a 50-59-year-old Maori woman said.

However, the country has warmed up to people from Asia, with 36 per cent feeling 'cooler' toward them, down from 44 per cent in 2015.

"I think actually knowing people and understanding their heritage allows for more tolerance/acceptance of our differences," a 60-69-year-old NZ European woman said.

This number is still high compared with 2009 when less than a fifth felt 'cooler' or 'coldly' towards people from Asia.

The survey interviewed a random sample of 1000 New Zealanders aged 15 and over.

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