In New Zealand, the term Pacific Islander is applied to a person who has emigrated from one of the smaller islands of the Pacific to New Zealand in modern times, or one of their descendants born in New Zealand.
While the majority of these people originate from Polynesia, others come from Micronesia and Melanesia. The term is used to distinguish these people from the indigenous New Zealand Maori, who are also Polynesian but arrived in New Zealand many centuries earlier, and come from other ethnic groups.
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