Australia now has more than 21 million people after its biggest annual population growth in four decades. The 1.5% growth in 2006-07 was driven by a strong birth rate (272,900 babies born in 2006-07) and record overseas migration, according to Australian Bureau of Statistics figures. Australia is now growing faster than China, the US and Britain.
The population growth was strongest in Queensland (2.2%) driven partly by migrants who traditionally have headed for Sydney or Melbourne. Western Australia with its resource boom came second with a 2.1% increase followed by Victoria at 1.5%, NSW slower at 1.1%, South Australia 1% and Tasmania trailing at 0.7%. NSW is edging closer to having seven million people while Victoria has 5.2 million.
The statistics also show that interstate migrants are leaving NSW to head to the sunshine state. Queensland got the gong for the highest net interstate migration with an additional 27,000 people.
Most states lost more people than they gained through interstate migration, with NSW losing a whopping 27,300 while Victoria only lost 2200.
Overall Australia’s residential population increased by 315,000, which is great news for astute entrepreneurs who no doubt will be studying the trends closely to identify where the new opportunities will be.