CRIME has risen in Christchurch over the past year - with robbery, vehicle theft, drug offences and public order incidents seeing the highest increases.

Cuts to officer numbers, changes in crime recording and reduced finances have been blamed, with a pledge from police to focus on issues where there is the "greatest threat, risk and harm".

Members of the council's scrutiny and policy review committee will hear the annual crime and disorder update on Tuesday.

The report states overall crime in Christchurch has risen by 14.2 per cent - 289 more offences.

Of these incidents, the number of recorded sexual offences this year is 59, compared to 47 in 2015/16. This represents a rise of 25.5 per cent.

Robbery is up by 250 per cent, from four to 18, with theft rising 17.5 per cent from 554 to 651.

Vehicle theft has increased by 24.1 per cent from 29 to 36 incidents, with drug offences up 38.9 per cent from 54 to 75.

However, dwelling burglary is down by 24 per cent, from 105 incidents to 79, with a 3.1 per cent reduction in other types of burglaries.

Theft from vehicles also saw a 15.9 per cent drop from 145 to 122 and criminal damage also reduced by 2.2 per cent.

And within the statistics for violence against the person - up 34.9 per cent from 475 to 641 - only ten of these relate to serious assaults, with most minor assaults. The crime also includes harassment.

The report to members says that percentage increases should be viewed in context, "where small numbers can present exceptionally low or high percentages."

It also says the National Crime Recording Standards has had some impact on data - including anti-social behaviour which has risen by 11.1 per cent, 130 more incidents.

This is in part due to the loss of proactive preventative youth teams in the community, the report states.

Partnership and Coordinating Groups (PCG) monitor crime and anti-social behaviour trends in the area, and take place every six weeks.

The report concludes: "Christchurch continues to be a safe place to live and levels of crime and anti-social behaviour are still low compared to other areas in the country.

"We must continue to work with our communities and partners in order to promote crime prevention measures where ever possible."