Migration key to New Hampshire’s future growth

For the last 60 years, New Hampshire has relied on relatively high population growth to fuel its economic expansion. In the 1960s and 1990s, the state’s population grew by an average of over 12,000 people per year. During the 1970s and 1980s, that figure rose to more than 18,000 people per year.

Migration was a significant component of that growth. Research from University of New Hampshire professor Ken Johnson, published in October 2023, identified that a majority of New Hampshire’s residents were not born in the state, but moved here from another state or country. That contrasts with the statistics for the nation overall, as well as the combined figure for the New England states, where more than half of residents were born in their home state.

Since 2000, New Hampshire’s population growth has slowed. About 8,000 people were added to the population each year from 2000 to 2010, and population growth averaged only about 6,000 people per year from 2010 to 2020. That slowing growth reflects both migration patterns and demographic changes.

Jean Hakuzimana moved to New Hampshire from Rwanda five years ago with a background in communications and a resume that included working for the United Nations. But, his first job in the United States was working for a company making pre-cast molds for concrete.

He’d waited a year and two months for this job a long 14 months with no work permit in an unfamiliar place. But work was work, especially when trying to support his family…

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