Want to know where Australia’s population is growing the fastest?
Well…now you can find out courtesy of the latest ABS update on local populations (Regional Population Growth), which comes out in March every year, relating to the previous June 30th.
- People living in the capitals increased by 303,100 people or 1.8%.
- Capital city growth accounted for 79% of total population growth.
- Melbourne (113,500) and Sydney (87,100) had the largest growth.
- Melbourne (2.3%) and Brisbane (2.1%) had the highest growth rates.
Melbourne was the fastest-growing state capital with a growth rate of 2.3%, adding over 113,000 people in the last financial year.
At this growth rate, Melbourne could overtake Sydney as Australia’s largest city around 2027-2028, when both would have a population close to 6 million.
Brisbane also grew strongly, at 2.1%, but this is Greater Brisbane, not the City of Brisbane, and includes Logan, Ispwich, Redland, and Moreton Bay areas).
Overall, capital cities accounted for 79% of Australia’s annual population growth in 2018-19.
|Population change by capital city|
ERP at 30 June 2019
|Total capital cities|
Components of population change.
Population change at the regional level has three main components: natural increase, overseas migration, and internal migration.
- Natural increase was the largest contributor to population change in Perth and Canberra.
- Net overseas migration was the major contributor to population change in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, and Hobart.
- Net internal migration loss was largest in Sydney, Adelaide, and Darwin.
- All three components contributed similarly to population change in Brisbane.
Components of population change by the capital city
Of course, population growth doesn’t necessarily lead to capital growth, so I’m not suggesting these high-growth suburbs are “investment grade locations.
But the areas with the largest growth were:
- Cranbourne East (up by 7,800 people) in Melbourne’s outer south-east
- Cobbitty – Leppington in Sydney’s outer south-west and Riverstone – Marsden Park in Sydney’s outer north-west (both 5,300)
The areas with the highest growth rates were:
- Mickleham – Yuroke (53%) in Melbourne’s outer north
- Moncrieff (38%) in Canberra’s outer north
- Rockbank – Mount Cottrell (37%) in Melbourne’s outer west
Outside of the capital cities:
- Pimpama (up by 3,300 people) on Queensland’s Gold Coast had the largest growth
- Pimpama also had the highest growth rate (20%)
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