This section provides statistics on melanoma registrations and deaths in New Zealand.

Melanoma is a type of skin cancer, and most melanoma is caused by UV exposure. Risk factors for melanoma include sun exposure, fair skin, and childhood sun exposure/sunburns.

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Melanoma affects many New Zealanders
New Zealand has one of the highest rates of melanoma in the world
Māori have low rates of melanoma

Melanoma affects many New Zealanders

Skin cancer is one of the most common cancers in New Zealand. In 2011, melanoma was the 4th most commonly registered cancer, and the 6th most common cancer death in New Zealand [1]. 

In 2013, there were 2359 melanoma registrations in New Zealand [2]. The melanoma registration rate consistently remained higher for males than females from 2000 to 2013. 

Figure 1

In 2011, 359 people died from melanoma in New Zealand. The male mortality rate has shown an upward trend recently [1]. 

Figure 2

New Zealand has one of the highest rates of melanoma in the world

New Zealand and Australia have the highest rates of melanoma incidence and mortality in the world.

Figure 3

Source: IARC 2014 [3]

Māori have low rates of melanoma

Māori have much lower rates of melanoma than non-Māori. In 2013, the age-standardised Māori rate for melanoma registrations was 7 per 100,000, compared with over 40 per 100,000 for non-Māori (provisional data) [2].

Figure 4

Information about the data

Melanoma cancer registrations and deaths
Source: Ministry of Health – New Zealand Cancer Registry [1,2]
Definition: Melanoma is defined as melanoma of the skin registrations (ICD-10 C43) in the New Zealand Cancer Registry. Rates are per 100,000 people, and have been age-standardised to the WHO world standard population.  
Global melanoma statistics
Source: Globocan (IARC 2014) [3]


1. Ministry of Health. 2014. Cancer: New registrations and deaths 2011. Wellington: Ministry of Health.

2. Ministry of Health. 2014. Selected Cancers 2011, 2012 & 2013. Wellington: Ministry of Health

3. IARC. 2014. GLOBOCAN 2012: Estimated cancer incidence, mortality and prevalence worldwide in 2012.   Retrieved June 2014, from