Ethnicity of trades workers over time

The proportion of Asian workers has increased over time in trade sectors. For some sectors this has been gradual incline over the past 20 years while for sectors the rise has been more sudden in the past 6 years.

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Trade workers are defined from IRD tax records. To be considered an employee in a year they must earn at least the equivalent of 120 hours at the minimum wage in a month for three months in the year. We set no income threshold on self-employed workers.


Access to the data used in this study was provided by Stats NZ under conditions designed to give effect to the security and confidentiality provisions of the Data and Statistics Act 2022. The results presented in this study are the work of the author, not Stats NZ or individual data suppliers.

These results are not official statistics. They have been created for research purposes from the Integrated Data Infrastructure (IDI) which is carefully managed by Stats NZ. For more information about the IDI please visit

The results are based in part on tax data supplied by Inland Revenue to Stats NZ under the Tax Administration Act 1994 for statistical purposes. Any discussion of data limitations or weaknesses is in the context of using the IDI for statistical purposes, and is not related to the data's ability to support Inland Revenue's core operational requirements.


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