New Zealand 1949

By | December 1, 2021

According to the 1945 census, New Zealand’s population was 1,702,298. (without dependencies) divided by provinces, as follows:

Since the last census (1936) the absolute increase of the population (excluding the annexed and external islands) was 128,488 residents (1,573,810 in 1936). This modest increase is almost exclusively due to the natural increase, since, in the last decade, extremely restrictive laws and war events have almost dried up immigration which in 1944 fell to just 3,747 immigrants (13,814 in 1941). On the other hand, a significant demographic increase was then recorded in the two years that followed the end of the war: according to estimates of 1 April 1947, it resulted in New Zealand (without dependencies) 1,793,225 residents of which 106,492 Maori. This increase is equivalent overall, in these two years, to 5.2% for the European population. Characteristic is the accentuation of the displacement of residents from South Island to North Island. While in 1867 63.4% of the population resided in the South Island and in 1906 46.3%, according to the last census only 32.6% of the residents reside in the South Island, while those of the North Island are currently 67.3%. Another interesting phenomenon is the continuous growing urbanism, which is reflected in the depopulation of some rural areas: the urban population, which in 1906 was, approximately, 46.4%, in 1935 it had risen to 61.3%. For New Zealand 2014, please check

Economic conditions (p. 73). – In recent years, with the intensification of the production of beef and sheep, the eminently pastoral character of the New Zealand agricultural economy has been accentuated. Deforestation continued on a large scale, with the aim of obtaining new natural and artificial pastures. In the last twenty years, from 1920 to 1940, in the Northern Island alone, the area of ​​natural pastures has increased by 40,000 ha. Forest vegetation currently occupies 4.3 million ha. (50,000 sq. Km. In 1929), that is about 16% of the surface of the islands. Special measures were recently taken to prevent further destruction of the forest heritage, which largely passed under the control of the state. The most recent statistics on land use give an idea of ​​the place occupied by the breeding on the two islands. In fact, on an area of ​​174,000 sq. Km. of land that can be used for agricultural purposes, as many as 129,000 sq. km. (i.e. 73%) is occupied by natural or artificial meadows and pastures. In 1945 the New Zealand livestock stock amounted to 33,974,612 sheep (29,051,382 in 1929), 4,590,926 cattle (3,445,700 in 1929), 593,828 pigs (556,732 in 1929) and 217,689 horses (298,986 in 1929). From the above figures, the significant increase in sheep and cattle breeding is evident, while pig and horse breeding remains stationary or shows slight decreases. As a consequence of the increased demand for livestock products, in recent years there has been a significant tendency to reduce the areas cultivated with wheat (98,421 ha. In 1941; 74,418 in 1945), while there is a slight increase in barley and oat crops. Among the new economic trends it should be noted the spread of fruit plant crops, which already provide a large export. War requirements have increased exports of butter, frozen meat, wool, cheeses and skins, products which alone account for 80% of exports.

They mainly import cars, silk and cotton fabrics, chemicals, wheat, sugar: the trade is mainly aimed at the United Kingdom, the United States and Australia.

Bibl.: K. Kumberland, A century’s change: natural and cultural vegetation in New Zealand, in The geographical Review, 1941; LW Wood, Understanding New Zealand, New York 1944: R. Bowman, A walkabout down under recent geographical literature on Australia and New Zealand, in Geographical Review, 2, 1948; see also New Zealand magazine, Geographer, of the New Zealand Geographic Society, and New Zealand Official Year-Book.

Finances. – The ordinary income and expenses of the Consolidated Fund have had the following trend over the last ten years:

War expenses were accounted for separately in a “war expense account” set up in September 1939 and only starting from the financial year 1946-47 were the appropriations for normal military expenses and demobilization subsidies included in the consolidated fund. According to what the Minister of Finance declared in August 1946, the total cost of the war for the Domain was 640 million pounds of which 35% (221.8 million) was covered by war loans issued in the Domain. Although in the financial year 1946-47 there was an initial reduction in the taxation imposed during the war, the per capita tax burden is approximately three times that of the pre-war period.

The total public debt as of March 31, 1947 amounted to 634.8 million pounds. As of December 31, 1946, New Zealand was Britain’s creditor for blocked sterling balances, accumulated during the war and immediately after the war, of 91 million pounds; on this figure, in March 1947, he made a rebate of 10 million pounds, equal to 12.5 million New Zealand pounds. The fiduciary circulation, which in 1939 was 17.1 million New Zealand pounds, increased in September 1948 to 43.5 million. In November 1945, one of New Zealand’s two ordinary banks, the Bank of New Zealand, was fully nationalized.

History (XXV, p. 75; App. I, p. 902). – The law, Social security act – which established, in favor of workers, the unemployed, the sick, the elderly, mathematics, etc., one of the most perfected social assistance systems in the world – enacted in 1938, to shortly after the elections, he helped bring Labor back to government. However, they had a slightly reduced majority compared to 1935. Early in the day New Zealand sensed the danger of war and began to prepare for it. During the Imperial London Conference in 1937, Prime Minister Savage voiced his criticisms of the policy of appeasement. by Chamberlain; two years later, British and Australian representatives met in Wellington with the New Zealanders to discuss the organization of the Pacific defense. On September 3, 1939, war was declared on Germany, for the first time in a way distinct from the corresponding declaration from the United Kingdom. The mobilization reached its maximum development three years later, in the midst of the struggle against Japan: 127,000 men in the army, 24,000 in the air force, 6000 in the navy. These forces fought in Greece, North Africa, the Pacific, and Italy. Engaged in a struggle for its own existence, the Dominion evolved towards autonomy, albeit within the framework of an ever-deep British solidarity. 1944 was the year of the “regional” agreement with Australia and of adoption of the Statute of Westminster. At the end of the war, the Labor government extended representation abroad by establishing legations in Washington and Moscow, internally it continued its policy of state intervention. Nationalized the Bank of New Zealand, the coal mines, the airline companies; he abolished the “agrarian quota”, a multiple vote which tended to favor the countryside, sparsely populated, towards the city. Then public opinion reacted. On the one hand, not a few judged the burden of social assistance and building constructions for private use excessive for the state and such as to hinder the reduction of taxes, rationing and the control of imports anachronistic, exaggerated the impulse to industrialization for the scarcity of the hand work and the narrowness of the internal market, on the other hand the strikes against the freeze on wages intensified and for the week of 40 hours on 5 working days (granted in 1947). In the elections of 1946, the gap between Labor and the National Party of Holland, which had already decreased further in 1943, was thus reduced to 4 votes corresponding to the Maori electorates. During 1947, in accordance with the UN Board of Trustees, Western Samoa was moved towards self-government. Immigration resumed in 1947 limited to a few categories of skilled workers, coming almost exclusively from Great Britain and Northern Europe. On 8 December 1947 the British Parliament, amending the 1852 Constitution and the Statute of Westminster,

With the intention of halting or curbing the rise in domestic prices, on August 19, 1948, the New Zealand pound was brought back to par with the British pound; a measure that could have taken the world market by surprise, given the absence of New Zealand from the International Monetary Fund. In that year the trade balance, strongly active in the previous two, almost fell to equilibrium, adding the effect of the revaluation to that of the European production recovery. The damage that excessive imports could have caused to production in general was remedied by maintaining the licensing system; the losses of agricultural producers, mostly exporters, were compensated for with a system of stabilization funds.

New Zealand 1949