Births v deaths

This concluding post in the population missive series includes two charts and two tables.  Click on these links if you missed part 1 and part 2 of this short series.

Chart 1 tells me that Australia’s baby boom, albeit at a slowing pace, continues (see the red line and left-hand scale on chart 1) despite the removal of the baby bonus a few years back.  Deaths are also rising (grey line and right-hand scale) due mostly to our aging population.  As a result, natural increase – see chart 2 – is on the slide.  Natural increase is simply births minus deaths.

Table 1

Australia: Population growth by state/territory

State/Territory Total population Annual population growth
Total population growth Natural

increase

New South Wales 8,089,817 109,649 45,557
Victoria 6,596,039 134,020 37,343
Queensland 5,094,510 85,086 29,882
South Australia 1,751,963 15,436 5,335
Western Australia 2,621,509 27,328 18,064
Tasmania 534,457 6,159 1,159
Northern Territory 245,929 -1,129 2,524
ACT 426,704 6,325 3,409
Australia 25,365,571 382,883 143,281
Matusik + ABS.  Fiscal 2019.

Table 1 tells me that natural increase is largely concentrated in our bigger urban areas – the Sydney region, Melbourne, south east Queensland and Perth.

Table 2

Top 25 Australian LGAs ranked by natural increase

Local Authority Area, State and Rank Annual population growth
Total growth Natural increase % total growth
1 Brisbane (C) Qld 23,044 8,244 36%
2 Blacktown (C) NSW 8,373 4,380 52%
3 Wyndham (C) Vic 15,120 4,039 27%
4 Casey (C) Vic 13,429 3,823 28%
5 Canterbury-Bankstown (A) NSW 4,431 3,518 79%
6 Logan (C) Qld 7,864 3,465 44%
7 Gold Coast (C) Qld 13,990 3,121 22%
8 Moreton Bay (R) Qld 10,009 2,897 29%
9 Cumberland (A) NSW 4,922 2,871 58%
10 Hume (C) Vic 9,048 2,698 30%
11 Ipswich (C) Qld 8,739 2,570 29%
12 Parramatta (C) NSW 6,132 2,483 40%
13 Liverpool (C) NSW 4,560 2,478 54%
14 Whittlesea (C) Vic 6,891 2,270 33%
15 Wanneroo (C) WA 4,628 2,212 48%
16 Penrith (C) NSW 4,030 2,187 54%
17 Melton (C) Vic 8,177 1,985 24%
18 Campbelltown (C) (NSW) NSW 3,013 1,799 60%
19 Sydney (C) NSW 6,241 1,594 26%
20 Swan (C) WA 4,020 1,557 39%
21 Camden (A) NSW 7,408 1,531 21%
22 Stirling (C) WA 905 1,501 166%
23 Brimbank (C) Vic 779 1,495 192%
24 Townsville (C) Qld 1,013 1,371 135%
25 Moreland (C) Vic 3,987 1,364 34%
Matusik + ABS.  Fiscal 2019.

Table 2 outlines the top 25 local authority areas across Australia ranked by natural increase during fiscal 2019.  Most of these areas are outer suburbs or in the outer conurbations of our four largest cities.   Townsville is a rare exception.

My comments

Australia’s fertility rate is currently 1.7, which is below 2.1.  Here 2.1 is commonly referred to as the replacement rate.  So, without overseas migration Australia’s population would, in due course, start to shrink.  Many might think that is a good thing.  Sadly, our economy – as it is currently structured – won’t like it at all.  Nor would most people’s bank balance.

Maybe part of any COVID-19 recovery package should include the reinstatement of the baby bonus?

If not, then further pressure will build to increase our overseas migrant intake.  As outlined last week we will need immigrants to help keep our economy afloat and to help cover our debt.

Whatever the outcome, most births will continue to take place in our suburbs and increasing young families will live further away from downtown.  There is nothing wrong with this.  What’s wrong is trying to change this trend.  How we plan for, and handle this growth, is what really matters.

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