List of Chinese New Zealanders

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This is a list of New Zealand people, some or all of whose ancestors originated in China.


  • Peter Chin - Mayor of Dunedin, 'Old Generation' Cantonese New Zealander. Dunedin born Chinese, married to Noleen for 46 years, with four children and eight grandchildren. Forty three years a practicing lawyer in Dunedin underpins 15 years of Council experience. He has been a Dunedin City Councillor since 1995 and was elected Mayor of Dunedin in 2004. Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit in 2003 in acknowledgment of his services to local body and community affairs. A member of the NZ Chinese Poll Tax Advisory Team, chairperson of the Dunedin Chinese Gardens Trust, involved in the performing arts. Has performed for Dunedin Opera Company and Dunedin Operatic Society, and comperes concerts; featured in the film Illustrious Energy, TV drama series Hanlon and the TV series Gold. Was defeated as Mayor on 9 October 2010.
  • Meng Foon - Mayor of Gisborne, 'Old Generation' Cantonese New Zealander
  • Raymond Huo - Member of Parliament 2008-2014 and since 2017, first-generation mainland Chinese
  • Pansy Wong - New Zealand's first ethnic Chinese MP 1996-2011, first Asian MP, and first Asian Cabinet Minister, 1970s Generation Hong Kong migrant New Zealander of Shanghai heritage
  • Kenneth Wang - former ACT party MP 2004-2005, came to New Zealand in 1986, graduated from Auckland University with a master's degree in fine Arts in 1988, founder of advertising and media agency Brandwork
  • Dr Jian Yang - List MP for National 2011 election mp since 2011. Entry into Parliament follows a distinguished academic career. Previously Senior Lecturer of International Relations at the University of Auckland and Associate Dean (Postgraduate) of the Faculty of Arts and Director of the China Studies Centre at the New Zealand Asia Institute. Was Chair of the Auckland Branch of the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs (NZIIA) since 2002 after serving as its deputy chair in 2001. Tertiary education in China-MA and PhD in International Relations at Australian National University (ANU). University of Auckland in March 1999.


  • Xiao ming Huang ( Chinese: 黃小明) - senior lecturer of Faculty of Political Studies, Victoria University of Wellington; fluent in Chinese, English and Finnish
  • Limin Bai( Chinese: 白莉民) - lecturer of Faculty of Asian Languages, Victoria University of Wellington, Dr. Bai's main research topics are Chinese educational system during Ming Dynasty (AD. 1368-A.D 1644) and Qing Dynasty (AD. 1644-AD 1911)
  • Geeling Ng - model and actress, born in 1960 in New Zealand; known for Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985), Illustrious Energy (1988) and Desperate Remedies (1993)[1]
  • Raven Tao - model, television host, actress and former radio DJ based in Hong Kong.[2]
  • Bic Runga, singer/songwriter, of Māori (indigenous New Zealander) and Chinese Malaysian parentage
  • Boh Runga, New Zealand recording artist; lead singer and guitarist in New Zealand rock band Stellar; older sister of Bic Runga and Pearl Runga, who are also musicians
  • Pearl Runga - the middle sister in the Runga family, the lowest profile of all the sisters; a career teacher but moonlights as part of the bandCe Soir
  • Li Ming Hu, known for her role as Li Mei Chen in New Zealand's popular TV show, Shortland Street, second-generation New Zealander of Singaporean and Taiwanese parentage.
  • Raybon Kan - comedian, second-generation New Zealander of Mainland Chinese parentage
  • Li Chunli - gold medal-winning table tennis champion, 1980s generation migrant New Zealander and Mainland Chinese[3]
  • Wing - singer, emigrated from Hong Kong.
  • Geoff Joe, - digital art director, beer pong player and Top 5 ranked Table Tennis player at Colenso BBDO (2013-2015). Best friends with the famous creative technologist Robbie 'Floyd' Boyd. Also known as Joffrey.
  • Josh Yee, Digital Creative, sat next to Geoff Joe from (2013-2014) before sitting next to the famous Russian Spies brother Shane Wheaton 'Gene'. "Pingers here" is an Internet meme made popular by the man himself which spawned many parodies and has become a popular slang term among the people of the Facebook Group Arseholes. *Is the other half of Joffrey.
  • Ant Sang - comic book artist and graphic designer, best known for his work on the Bro'Town television series, SHAOLIN BURNING, a graphic novel about two very different kung-fu fighters
  • Roseanne Liang - filmmaker. Writer and director of the feature film My Wedding and Other Secrets and the short film Banana in a Nutshell. awarded SPADAS New Filmmaker of the Year and WIFT's Woman to Watch, Masters at the University of Auckland. Short film Take 3 won awards at A-list film festivals in Berlin and Spain. Won Best Actress and Best Feature Screenplay at the 2010 Aotearoa Film & TV Awards, named a Sir Peter Blake Trust Emerging Leader, was a finalist in the Arts and Culture section of Next Magazine’s Woman of the Year Awards 2012. DIRECTOR / WRITER / CO-CREATOR Flat 3
  • Denise Kum - artist, born NZ 1968, Elam, Won two New Zealand Film awards for Best Make-Up for her work in Savage Honeymoon and Channeling Baby. Previous credits include The Last Sumarai; In My Father’s Den; Finding Neverland; North Country; Sylvia; Aeon Flux; The Vintner’s Luck, Hippie Hippie Shake.
  • Michelle Ang (born 17 October 1983) - New Zealand film and television actress; regular cast member on the Australian show "Neighbours", "Outrageous Fortune" "The Tribe". Won "Best Actress in A Feature Film" at New Zealand Film and Television Awards 2011 for "My Wedding and Other Secrets"; nominated for a Logie for her role in "Neighbours".
  • Susan K Louie (1960-) - NZ born Chinese. Born in Gisborne, East Coast. Cast glass artist telling personal stories of being brought up as a Chinese girl on a market garden in Manutuke. Continues to explore identity and culture. Actively involved in NZSAG as Secretary/Editor and President of the NZ Society of Artists in Glass Inc from 2004-2008. She uses the taniwha and dragon to tell the story of the relationship between Maori and Chinese peoples. An award-winning artist who held a solo at Tairawhiti Museum in 2008. Her works are held in public and private collections in NZ and overseas.
  • Mei-Lin Te Puea Hansen The Mookcake and the Kumara', by Maori-Chinese playwright Mei-Lin Te Puea Hansen -
  • Harry Wong (Wong Sing Tai) 黄胜大 Date of Birth: 1943, Otaki, New Zealand leading Chinese/New Zealand Artist / Film Maker of Chinese descent. Harry's father was Harry Wong Senior Wong Shung from Canton [GuangZhou].
  • Brent Wong - painter, born in New Zealand in 1945, spent the early part of his life in the capital, moving north to the main commercial centre for a time, before settling on the west coast[4]
  • Rossano Fan - painter,architect who designed many houses, including some in Levin, died in Wellington on 17 July 2014[5]
  • J J Fong performer with talent diversifying across many platforms; singing, MC/hosting events and television, acting, producing, dancing, and choreographing. Go Girls, regular on Stepdave webseries, Flat3 [6]
  • Ally Xue - actress, Flat 3[7]
  • Perlina Lau - actress, Flat 3, Director's Assistant for News at MediaWorks NZ [8]


  • Arthur Stanley Fong born June 12, 1908 - referee for the New Zealand-British Isles test match in Wellington 4 August 1950,[9] played inter provincial football for the West Coast for six seasons and represented South Island against North Island as a five-eighth 1933[10]
  • Tyla Nathan-Wong - New Zealand Women's Sevens (2012–14); Maori Women's Sevens (2012); Auckland Women's Sevens (2012–13); NZ Women's Touch team (2010–present); NZ U19 Women's Touch Team (2011)[11]
  • Pat Lam A.K.A: Patrick Richard Lam B September 29, 1968; NZ born rugby union coach of Samoan and Chinese descent.
  • Heather Martin-Chan - youngest New Zealand female to be scouted to play basketball in the United States, Layton Christian Academy in Utah[12][13]

Journalists and writers[edit]

  • Tze Ming Mok - cultural commentator, blogger and literary writer; second generation New Zealander of Chinese Singaporean and Malaysian parentage. . Editor of the May 2006 issue of Landfall, a New Zealand literary journal.[14]
  • Alison Wong (1960-) - 'Old Generation' Cantonese; poet and fiction writer; born in Hastings, New Zealand; great grandparents on both sides migrated from China's Guangdong; Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from Victoria University As the Earth Turns to Silver – published 2010, shortlisted for Australian PM awards; Robert Burns Fellow at the University of Otago,poetry collection Cup. Selected to take part in an inaugural writers’ exchange with China 2014- first New Zealand writer to join the prestigious Shanghai International Writers’ Program run by the Shanghai Writers’ Association[15]
  • Chris Tse - writer and poet. Born and raised in Lower Hutt, New Zealand. His poetry has been published in numerous literary journals in addition to being featured in the joint collection AUP New Poets 4 (Auckland University Press, 2011).[16] Tse's first full-length poetry collection, How to be Dead in a Year of Snakes, was published by Auckland University Press in September 2014.[17] In 2016, Snakes received the Jessie Mackay Award for Best First Book of Poetry and was a finalist in the poetry category at the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards.[18]
  • Renee Liang playwright and poet. Plays include Lantern, F.A.A.B. and The Bone Feeder. Dr Renee Liang is a paediatrician by day, poet and playwright by night. A prominent figure in Auckland's Chinese community, she is the daughter of immigrants, the sister of film-maker Roseanne Liang[19]
  • Jack Yan—graphic designer and publisher of fashion magazine Lucire, 1.5 generation Hong Kong migrant New in font software; new-media fashion publishing[20]
  • Gilbert Wong - columnist for Listener, current Communications at New Zealand Human Rights Commission, Past - Senior writer, arts editor at ACPMedia, Arts and Books Editor at New Zealand Herald, Weekend Life Editor at New Zealand Herald, writer and editor. Broad and senior experience in magazines and newspapers in New Zealand and overseas. Has earned awards, including a Fulbright Exchange Scholarship to study and gain work experience on American newspapers. Contributor to RNZ and interest in cultural coverage and commentary.[21]
  • Simon Wong - 3 News Online editor/ reporter, former Marlborough Express reporter;former print journalist;joined 3 News online team in 2013. Born Auckland, studied journalism at AUT University and at Ryerson University in Toronto.
  • Kimberlee Downs - One News sports reporter; born and raised in Taranaki;represented the region in hockey;graduated from Auckland University of Technology Bachelor of Communications, majoring in Journalism; worked Auckland newsroom since 2009,Assignments Desk,online producer, a junior reporter for general news and producer for TVNZ7; joined Breakfast team as producer/reporter 2011;sports reporting mid-2012.[22]
  • Helene Wong - graduate of Victoria University of Wellington with a BA Honours (First Class) in Sociology, Helene worked in the Public Service for nine years. A third-generation Chinese-New Zealander. Being Chinese: A New Zealander's Story - 2016 by Helene Wong


  • Dr. Paul Wong Mechanical Engineering- Applied Robotics and Apparel Robotics, Following a number of years in both white goods production technology and medical technology R&D (Fisher Paykel), he was appointed as Officer-in-Charge of the Australian Wool Corporation's Robot Sheep Shearing Programme. Over the next 4 years the programme produced the world's first sheep shearing robot.[23]
  • Dr Edmon Wong an eminent former scientist who has researched on plant and food biochemistry in New Zealand, the USA and Germany. He came to join the rest of his family in New Zealand in 1940, via Hong Kong, attended school in Wellington, and gained his PhD from the University of New Zealand. He is now retired. Author of Gwa Leng Wongs in New Zealand


  • Choie Sew Hoy ( Chinese: 徐肇開)n 1868 he came to Otago and set up in business in Stafford Street as a merchant. He supplied miners and goldfield traders, imported goods, exported fungus [muk yee] and invested widely in gold mining and water-race ventures. In 1888 Choie Sew Hoy's company built the world's first gold dredge to work the Big Beach claim on the Shotover River in Central Otago. The huge Nokomai hydraulic sluicing operation in Southland was the biggest of its type in New Zealand. Choie Sew Hoy was naturalised in 1873 and became a notable figure in both European and Chinese circles. He was fluent in English and signed his letters in English "Sew Hoy". This was mistaken for his family name and he became known by Europeans as "Mr Sew Hoy" and "Charles Sew Hoy". He adopted the name, and many of his descendants in New Zealand have Sew Hoy as their family name.
  • Chew Chong Chew Chong (Chau Tseung) born in Canton (Guangzhou), China Kaiping county, Guangdong province. Date of birth is unclear - between 1827 and 1844. After receiving a good education, which included English, Chong went to Singapore, where he worked in a merchant's office. Around 1856 he emigrated to Victoria, Australia, and for 11 years was a storekeeper in Castlemaine. In 1867 he left for Otago, New Zealand.[24]
  • George Sue Levin businessman, justice of the peace, inducted into the Kapiti-Horowhenua Business Hall of Fame in October,awarded a Queen's Service Medal for services to the community in the New Year honours 2013. Added to the Kapiti Horowhenua Business Hall of Fame.[25]
  • Appo Hocton (c.1823–26 September 1920) - Chinese-born New Zealand servant, landlord, carter and farmer[26]
  • K C Loo - Mt Eden businessman - Stokes Road and Mt Eden Road, since 1949 [27]
  • Mai Chen - prominent constitutional lawyer, Chair of the short-lived Pan Asian Congress of 2002, 1970s generation and 1.5 generation Taiwanese migrant New Zealander
  • Ron Sang - architect, art collector, art exhibitor and publisher of New Zealand art books
  • Sushan McDowall - immigration lawyer with own firm; New Zealand-born Chinese to immigrant parents from Guangzhou.


Overseas Chinese (华侨), or Huaqiao[edit]

  • FONG, Rev Yik Tak L.Th. b. Sin Wu, Canton, South China 22.1.1904. Chu Suk Ying b. Canton South China 20.11.1915 m 26.9.1934 d 17.8.2006. Born into a Buddhist family in South China. Attended Christian Mission School; graduated from Middle School Canton 1928; then studied theology at Union Theological College,Lignam University in Canton, graduated with Licentiate of Theology in 1933. Ordained 30.10.1940 at Hong Kong by the Kwantung Synod of the Church of Christ in China.[28]
  • HUNG, Dr Cheung-Tak. 孔祥德. b 1953 Hong Kong to Hong Kong business family. Older twin brothers Cheung-Fai and Cheung-Wai, (both civil engineers, Hong Kong) and younger brothers Cheung-Kin (General surgeon Hong Kong), and Cheung-Him (NTSS owner and IT developer, Hong Kong). Studied pharmacy at Robert Gordon's University, Aberdeen, Scotland, Graduated BSc (pharmacy) Hons and PhD under Professor Robert Taylor from Aberdeen in 1981. Appointed Lecturer in Pharmacy, University of Otago, New Zealand by Head of Department and pharmacokinetics expert Professor Don Perrier, in 1983. Married 1986 Dr Noelyn Anne Hung (née Buisman, aka Robertson, aka Kinn), BSc, MBChB (Otago), FRCPA, great grand daughter of Katikati pioneer William John Gray. Started in business in 1987 at biotechnology and clinical research organisation Zenith Technology, Dunedin, New Zealand, becoming owner and Managing Director in 2003. Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for contributions to New Zealand business, philanthropy, and contributions to the NZ Chinese community. Daughter Dr Natalie Grace Ling-Yun, 孔令韵. b. 02.06.90, Oxford University BA (Hons) Medical Sciences and Kings College London MBBS. Son Aidan Ling-Sen Hung, 孔令森. b. 21.12.2002, pupil at John McGlashan College Dunedin.


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  2. ^ "[1]". "Raven Tao isn't your average model, actress, TV host and radio personality—she also has 'real estate agent' and 'law student' on her résumé." HK Magazine.
  3. ^ New Zealand Olympic Committee
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  10. ^ The Sydney Morning Herald, Friday 6 September 1946
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  14. ^ Public Address | Yellow Peril
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  16. ^ Auckland University Press
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