Australia’s population continuing to grow rapidly


Immigration to Australia shot up by more than 245,000 extra people last year. population growth

Entrepreneur Dick Smith says it will come with disastrous consequences and is just the politicians way of cooking the books to keep economic growth figures artificially high.

While I agree population growth can be accompanies with social and infrastructure problems, it clearly does help our economy and underpins the property markets

Here are some highlights from the latest population figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics released late last year

  • Victoria continues to be the fastest growing state in Australia
  • Net overseas migration at the highest levels since 2009
  • Interstate migration to Queensland picks up again after a few slow years
  • In a reversal of recent trends, Tasmania records a net interstate migration gain

Population Growth, Quarterly

Population Growth Rate, Year Ended 30 June 2017

Key figures in each State:

(June 2017 vs June 2016)

State/TerritoryJun-17Jun-16Increase 1 year% Increase
New South Wales         7,861,068         7,739,274              121,7941.6%
Victoria         6,323,606         6,179,249              144,3572.3%
Queensland         4,928,457         4,848,877                79,5801.6%
South Australia         1,723,548         1,713,054                10,4940.6%
Western Australia         2,580,354         2,558,951                21,4030.8%
Tasmania            520,877            517,588                   3,2890.6%
Northern Territory            246,105            245,740                      3650.1%
Australian Capital Territory            410,301            403,468                   6,8331.7%
Australia (Total)       24,598,933       24,210,809              388,1241.6%

The impact of overseas migration

Nationally, the “Natural increase” (more births than deaths) stood at 142,600 – or 37% of total growth.

This was down a bit on the previous year, as the birth rate slowed.

On the other hand Net Overseas Migration was particularly high.  

It peaked in 2009 at 300,000 and in the last few years remained, it’s been steady around 180-190,000 p.a.

But in 2016-17, this rose to 245,400 – the highest rate of immigration since 2009.

There has been a real shift in the location of this overseas migration back into New South Wales and Victoria.

Particularly NSW, which in 2016-17 recorded the highest level of overseas migration in the past 50 years, at 98,570 people, or over 40% of all net migration.

Victoria’s was slightly lower, but still very strong, at 86,900.

Since around 90% of migrants to these states move to Sydney and Melbourne, we can say that Sydney and Melbourne account for over 70% of overseas migration into Australia.

Queensland’s migration is up strongly to 31,100.

Western Australia’s migration, which was high, at around 40-50,000 p.a. during the mining boom in 2011 through 2013, has fallen right back, and in 2016-17, only 13,100 new migrants called WA home.

South Australia continues to get consistently around 10,000 p.a., while

Interstate migration

Interstate migration patterns have also changed. world-globe-travel-plane-visit-holiday-migrate-immigrant-move

  • During the mining boom Western Australia was attracting lots of interstate migrants,  however, in 2016-17, it showed a large net loss – 11,722 more people moved out of WA than moved in.
  • The largest net interstate loss remains NSW, at -14,859 people – partly related to its high property price
  • Victoria recorded a new high of 17,182 net interstate migrants in 2016-17 – numbers not seen in Victoria since the gold rush.
  •  Queensland attracted 17,426 interstate migrants.
  • In 2016-17, Tasmania recorded positive interstate migration, to the tune of 741 people. This may not sound like much, but it reverses years of losses.
  • The ACT is also recording gains in interstate migration for the first time in a few years.

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