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ACT records its highest levels of overseas migration and natural population growth

By Glynis Quinlan 26 June 2018 6

The ACT has recorded its highest population growth since 2012.

The ACT has recorded its highest population growth since 2012 and has the second highest rate of population growth in the nation, according to the latest population figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

The key drivers of this growth were net overseas migration and natural increase which were both at the highest levels ever experienced in a calendar year by the ACT.

The ACT’s population grew by 2.2 per cent to 415,900 in the year ended 31 December 2017, with the Territory’s growth second only to Victoria which grew by 2.3 per cent in the same period.

ABS Demography Director Anthony Grubb said net overseas migration was the main contributor in the ACT’s growth at 48 per cent, with natural increase and net interstate migration contributing 44 per cent and 8 per cent respectively.

“Victoria continues to lead the nation in population growth with an annual increase of 2.3 per cent, followed by the Australian Capital Territory at 2.2 per cent and Queensland at 1.7 per cent. The Northern Territory recorded the lowest growth at 0.2 per cent,” Mr Grubb said.

“While not growing as fast as some other states and territories, large gains in overseas and interstate migration have nearly tripled Tasmania’s annual population growth over the past two years, increasing from 0.3 per cent in 2015 to 0.9 per cent in the year ended 31 December 2017.

“This brings Tasmania’s growth rate back up to levels last seen in 2008, thanks mainly to increases in net interstate migration.”

Overall, Australia’s population grew by 388,000 people in 2017 to reach 24.8 million by the end of the year.

As a result, the ABS is projecting that Australia will reach a population of 25 million in early August 2018.

According to demographer Mark McCrindle of McCrindle Research, Australia’s record population growth has exceeded all forecasts, with Australia originally not expected to reach 25 million until 2051 but now expected to achieve that figure 33 years early.

Net overseas migration added 240,400 people to Australia’s population in the year ended 31 December 2017, and accounted for 62 per cent of Australia’s total population growth.

Natural increase contributed 147,500 additional people to Australia’s population, made up of 308,500 births and 160,900 deaths.

Are you surprised that the ACT’s rate of population growth is the second highest in the nation? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.


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6 Responses to
ACT records its highest levels of overseas migration and natural population growth
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Loviatar 6:37 pm 28 Jun 18

The only thing I got out of this article is that we need to be encouraging educated Australians to contribute a higher proportion of population growth to this country. Of that 44% natural growth I wonder how much is a case of “but the government pays for me kids”. Either way, 44% is still drastically too low and should be pushed to the 90% mark.

actcyclist 10:22 am 27 Jun 18

Looking around Canberra there is a huge amount of construction funded by debt. I think that is explaining why the economy is going well and population is increasing along with it. Canberra is on a massive debt binge that’ll continue until they run out of credit and it crashes. I’m hoping it runs out before they start construction on $2billion of stage two of a tram that few people will use; and will take longer than the current bus system which is also used by only 9% of the population.

Capital Retro 6:20 pm 26 Jun 18

Population increase at this level is (here’s that word again), unsustainable.
It benefits none of us who is already over-contributing to the revenue that states, territories and local governments need and then there is the Federal side of things to be funded too.

Canberra needs to have a period of consolidation or something is going to give.

HiddenDragon 5:17 pm 26 Jun 18

“Are you surprised that the ACT’s rate of population growth is the second highest in the nation?”

Not greatly, although the trend may not continue for too much longer because the levels of spending in Canberra by the Territory and Federal governments (even with a pretty tight wages policy from the Feds) are unlikely to be sustainable.

The relative attractiveness of Canberra as having more affordable (less unaffordable) housing than in Sydney and Melbourne is now forecast to decline, so that may also contribute to a slowing rate of population growth over the next few years.

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