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3105.0.65.001 - Australian Historical Population Statistics, 2008  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 05/08/2008   
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EXPLANATORY NOTES


INTRODUCTION

1 Australian Historical Population Statistics is a compendium electronic release which contains a wide range of historical demographic data on a variety of topics. The data are presented in spreadsheet format (Microsoft Excel) going back, where possible, to the beginnings of European settlement (1788) of Australia.

2 This product is updated periodically. More up-to-date information may be available from the source products stated at the bottom of each spreadsheet. A list of related Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) and other publications can also be found below.


UPDATES

3 Australian Historical Population Statistics has been restructured for the 2008 update and is now based on a different numbering system to past releases of this product. Whereas tables were previously presented as a single continuous list, they are now contained within 13 data cubes, each of which contains multiple worksheets on a particular demographic topic.

4 The following is a record of updates made to the historical series:

  • 23/09/2008 (Scheduled): PERIODIC UPDATE: Latest available data to be added to tables 2.2, 2.3, 2.10, 3.1 and 3.2.
  • 05/08/2008 - PERIODIC UPDATE: Latest available data to be added to tables 1.1 - 1.10, 4.1, 4.4, 4.6, 4.8, 4.10, 4.12, 4.15 - 4.18, 5.1 - 5.6, 6.1 - 6.5, 7.1 - 7.9, 8.1 - 8.8, 9.22, 9.23, 10.1 - 10.5, 11.1 - 11.3, 11.5, 12.1 - 12.3, 12.5 and 13.7. Tables 4.4, 4.7, 4.11, 5.5, 7.1 - 7.9, 12.2 and 12.3 are amended.
  • 23/05/2006 - PERIODIC UPDATE: Latest available data added to tables 1-6, 17-19, 22, 24, 26, 28, 30, 33-65, 87-90, 92-95, 97. Tables 39 to 41, 48 to 56, 60, 65 and 87 are amended.
  • 01/10/2004 - ANNUAL UPDATE: Latest available data added to tables 1-6, 10, 14-15, 17-19, 22, 24, 26, 28, 30, 33-42, 44-65, 88-97, 105. Table 37 and 40 are amended.
  • 04/11/2003 - Tables 4, 5 and 6 amended. Please refer to the Corrigendum spreadsheets for Tables 4, 5, and 6 for details of the corrected figures.
  • 19/08/2003 - Tables 17 and 18 amended from 1991 onwards.
  • 19/08/2003 - New tables 16 and 86 created. Thus, table numbers have changed since the last update.
  • 19/08/2003 - ANNUAL UPDATE: Data from 31 December 1996 onwards have been revised and updated in tables 1-6, 9, 16 -19, 22, 24, 26, 28, 30, 35-42, 43-65, 86-90, 92-95, 97 and 104.
  • 26/09/2002 - Totals in table 76 amended.
  • 05/04/2002 - ANNUAL UPDATE: Latest available data added to tables 1-6, 16-18, 21, 23, 25, 27, 29, 32-55, 58, 62-64, 86-95 and 103.
  • 20/08/2001 - Table 1 amended.
  • 15/06/2001 - Table 56 amended.


REFERENCING THESE STATISTICS

5 Reference to the statistics in Australian Historical Population Statistics should be made along the following lines:
      Where original sources are referred to:
          (original source) as quoted in Australian Bureau of Statistics, (year), Australian Historical Population Statistics (cat. no. 3105.0.65.001), viewed (day month year).
      If reference is desired only to Australian Historical Population Statistics:
          Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, (year), Australian Historical Population Statistics (cat. no. 3105.0.65.001), viewed (day month year).


SOURCES

6 Australian Historical Population Statistics data have been compiled from a wide range of sources, including:
  • Colonial censuses, State censuses, Colonial Statistical Returns and Colonial Statistical Registers;
  • Australian Demography Bulletins produced by the Commonwealth Bureau of Census and Statistics;
  • Commonwealth censuses;
  • ABS demography publications; and
  • other ABS demography collections.

7 A summary of 19th century statistics collected by the colonial statistical bureaux can be found in the ABS publication Catalogue of Australian Statistical Publications, 1804 to 1901 (cat. no. 1115.0).

8 Early estimates of the Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population have been compiled from The Aboriginal Population of Australia (1980) by L.R. Smith. More recent estimates have been compiled from the Census of Population and Housing and other ABS demography collections.

9 Given that different sources often exist for the same data, minor discrepancies may exist between Australian Historical Population Statistics and these sources. References to the source(s) of information used to compile these statistics are given at the bottom of each spreadsheet.


COLONIES, STATES AND TERRITORIES

10 The terms 'state' and 'territory' are used to describe states and territories as they exist in the post-Federation period, as well as the various colonies that existed prior to Federation. For example, data presented in the tables under the heading 'NSW' relates to both the colony of New South Wales and the state of New South Wales.

11 Tasmania, Victoria and Queensland became independent from New South Wales in the years 1825, 1851 and 1859 respectively. Western Australia and South Australia came into existence in 1829 and 1836 respectively.

12 The Northern Territory and the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) came under the control of the Federal Government in 1911 and were no longer included in the estimates for South Australia and New South Wales respectively.

13 Following the 1992 amendments to the Acts Interpretation Act to include the Indian Ocean Territories of Christmas Island and the Cocos (Keeling) Islands as part of geographic Australia, population estimates commencing from September quarter 1993 include estimates for these two territories. To reflect this change, another category at the state and territory level has been created, known as Other Territories. Other Territories include Jervis Bay Territory (included in ACT estimates from 1915 to June quarter 1993), as well as Christmas Island and the Cocos (Keeling) Islands which were previously excluded from population estimates for Australia.


POPULATION ESTIMATES

14 Population is a generic term intended to describe the different methods of enumeration used from 1788 to the present day. Australian Historical Population Statistics uses four measures of population: actual location census counts, usual residence census counts, population estimates and the estimated resident population (ERP).

15 Actual location census counts are counts of all people, within the scope of the census, who spent census night in Australia. People are counted where they were at the time of the census, which may not be where they usually live. In contrast, usual residence census counts are counts of all people, based on where they usually live, rather than where they were on census night. Overseas visitors are excluded from usual residence data.

16 Early population estimates were obtained through colonial musters and, from 1828, through a series of relatively regular colonial censuses. The dates of these colonial censuses are shown in Table 1 below. In 1910, on the basis of the early musters and other colonial records, an annual series of population totals for the states was published for all years commencing from December 1788, the year of the first European settlement in Australia. They are disaggregated by sex from 1796.

17 The first simultaneous censuses of all Australian colonies was taken in 1881 and the first national census was taken in 1911. It was followed by others in 1921, 1933, 1947, 1954 and 1961. Since 1961 censuses have been conducted at five yearly intervals.

Table 1. Australian censuses, 1828 to 2006

Year
NSW
Vic.
Qld
SA
WA
Tas.
NT
ACT
Australia

1828
Nov.
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
1833
2 Sep.
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
1836
2 Sep.
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
1841
2 Mar.
. .
. .
. .
. .
27 Sep.
. .
. .
. .
1844
. .
. .
. .
26 Feb.
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
1846
2 Mar.
. .
. .
26 Feb.
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
1847
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
31 Dec.
. .
. .
. .
1848
. .
. .
. .
. .
10 Oct.
. .
. .
. .
. .
1851
1 Mar.
. .
. .
1 Jan.
. .
1 Mar.
. .
. .
. .
1854
. .
(a)26 Apr.
. .
. .
30 Sep.
. .
. .
. .
. .
1855
. .
. .
. .
31 Mar.
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
1856
1 Mar.
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
1857
. .
29 Mar.
. .
. .
. .
31 Mar.
. .
. .
. .
1859
. .
. .
. .
. .
31 Dec.
. .
. .
. .
. .
1861
7 Apr.
7 Apr.
(a)7 Apr.
7 Apr.
. .
7 Apr.
. .
. .
. .
1864
. .
. .
1 Jan.
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
1866
. .
. .
. .
26 Mar.
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
1868
. .
. .
2 Mar.
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
1870
. .
. .
. .
. .
31 Mar.
7 Feb.
. .
. .
. .
1871
2 Apr.
2 Apr.
1 Sep.
2 Apr.
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
1876
. .
. .
1 May
26 Mar.
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
1881(b)
3 Apr.
3 Apr.
3 Apr.
3 Apr.
3 Apr.
3 Apr.
(c)3 Apr.
. .
3 Apr.
1886
. .
. .
1 May
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
. .
1891
5 Apr.
5 Apr.
5 Apr.
5 Apr.
5 Apr.
5 Apr.
5 Apr.
. .
5 Apr.
1901
31 Mar.
31 Mar.
31 Mar.
31 Mar.
31 Mar.
31 Mar.
31 Mar.
. .
31 Mar.
1911
3 Apr.
3 Apr.
3 Apr.
3 Apr.
3 Apr.
3 Apr.
3 Apr.
(a)3 Apr.
3 Apr.
1921
4 Apr.
4 Apr.
4 Apr.
4 Apr.
4 Apr.
4 Apr.
4 Apr.
4 Apr.
4 Apr.
1933
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
1947
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
1954
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
1961
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
1966
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
1971
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
1976
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
1981
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
1986
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
30 Jun.
1991
6 Aug.
6 Aug.
6 Aug.
6 Aug.
6 Aug.
6 Aug.
6 Aug.
6 Aug.
6 Aug.
1996
6 Aug.
6 Aug.
6 Aug.
6 Aug.
6 Aug.
6 Aug.
6 Aug.
6 Aug.
6 Aug.
2001
7 Aug.
7 Aug.
7 Aug.
7 Aug.
7 Aug.
7 Aug.
7 Aug.
7 Aug.
7 Aug.
2006
8 Aug.
8 Aug.
8 Aug.
8 Aug.
8 Aug.
8 Aug.
8 Aug.
8 Aug.
8 Aug.

. . not applicable
(a) Previously included with NSW.
(b) The first simultaneous census of all Australian colonies.
(c) Included with SA for the censuses of 1866, 1871 and 1876. The NT was transferred to the Commonwealth on 1 January 1911.


18 Population estimates from Federation (1901) to 1971 are based on unadjusted (for under enumeration) census counts on an actual location basis, updated for post-censal years according to registered births and deaths by state/territory of registration, and interstate and overseas migration. From 1971 onwards the concept of estimated resident population (ERP) is used, which links people to their place of usual residence. ERP was introduced following the 1981 census and backdated to 1971.


Estimated resident population

19 Estimated resident population (ERP) is an estimate of the Australian population obtained by adding to the estimated population at the beginning of each period the component of natural increase (on a usual residence basis) and the component of net overseas migration. For the states and territories, account is also taken of estimated interstate movements involving a change of usual residence. ERP is derived from usual residence census counts, to which are added the estimated net census undercount and Australian residents estimated to have been temporarily overseas at the time of the census. Overseas visitors in Australia are excluded from this calculation.

20 After each census, estimates for the preceding intercensal period are revised by incorporating an additional adjustment (intercensal discrepancy) to ensure that the total intercensal increase agrees with the difference between the ERPs at the two 30 June dates in the respective census years.

21 The latest available ERP data are featured in the Population size and growth, Population distribution and Population age-sex structure data cubes, and are used to calculate the various rates found in the Births, Deaths, Life tables, Migration, Marriages and Divorces data cubes.

22 ERP data undergoes changing status from preliminary, to revised and then final. The status of the latest available ERP data in the current update are:
  • Final - all ERP data up to and including June quarter 2006;
  • Preliminary - ERP data from September quarter 2006 onwards.


COMPONENTS OF POPULATION CHANGE

Natural increase

23 Births and deaths data used to calculate natural increase are presented by state/territory of usual residence, using year of registration for preliminary data and year of occurrence for both revised and final data. Births and deaths data used for natural increase may therefore differ from births and deaths data elsewhere in this publication. For further details see Demography Working Paper 1998/2: Quarterly Birth and Death Estimates (cat. no. 3114.0).


Net overseas migration

24 Conceptually net overseas migration (NOM) is based on an international travellers' duration of stay being in or out of Australia for 12 months or more. It is the difference between the number of incoming travellers who stay in Australia for 12 months or more and are added to the population and the number of outgoing travellers who leave Australia for 12 months or more and are subtracted from the population.

25 Prior to 1 July 2006, NOM estimation methods used a 12/12 rule to determine if a traveller contributed to ERP. This meant that in order for a person to contribute to NOM they must stay in or be absent from Australia for a continuous period of 12 out of 12 months. From September quarter 2006 onwards a new method for calculating NOM is used. The key change is the introduction of a 12/16 rule, which requires a person to be in or absent from Australia for 12 months within a 16 month period, for determining a person's residency in Australia. Due to changes in the methods used to estimate NOM, caution should be exercised when comparing estimates over time. For further information see Information Paper: Improved Methods for Estimating Net Overseas Migration (cat. no. 3107.0.55.003) and Information Paper: Statistical Implications of Improved Methods of Estimating Net Overseas Migration, Australia 2007 (cat. no. 3107.0.55.005).

26 From July 1976 to June 2006 NOM was calculated as permanent and long-term arrivals less permanent and long-term departures, plus an adjustment for the effect of category jumping. This adjustment was necessary because net permanent and long-term migration figures were affected by changes in travel intentions from short-term to permanent/long-term or vice versa. Due to deficiencies identified in the measurement of category jumping, estimates for the September quarter 1997 to the June quarter 2001 were set to zero. Following a review, a new measure of category jumping (referred to more simply as the 'migration adjustment') was introduced from the September quarter 2001. For further information see the Technical Note in the September quarter 2005 issue of Australian Demographic Statistics (cat. no. 3101.0) and ABS Demography Working Paper 2003/5 - Net Overseas Migration: Adjusting for Actual Duration of Stay or Absence (cat. no. 3137.0). Adjustments applied to overseas migration estimates have also been discussed in a special article in the 2002-03 issue of Migration, Australia (cat. no. 3412.0).

27 Prior to July 1976 NOM was calculated by subtracting the number of total departures (permanent, long-term and short-term) out of Australia from the number of total arrivals (permanent, long-term and short-term) into Australia.


Net interstate migration

28 Interstate migration is a key determinant of the accuracy of state and territory population estimates. However, data on interstate migration for post-censal periods can not be directly estimated and are instead modelled using administrative by-product data. Currently the data used by the ABS is information on interstate changes of address advised to Medicare Australia and to the Department of Defence in the case of military. For further information on the process of estimating interstate migration and the administrative data used, see Demography Working Paper 2004/1: Review of Interstate Migration Method (cat. no. 3106.0.55.001) and Information Paper: Evaluation of Interstate Migration, 2006 to 2011 (cat. no. 3127.0.55.001).


Intercensal discrepancy

29 From July 1976 intercensal discrepancy is recorded as a separate component of population change. For the period July 1971 to June 1976 no intercensal discrepancy exists due to the method used to produce resident population estimates. Prior to July 1971, intercensal discrepancies were incorporated into the overseas and interstate migration components of population change.


INDIGENOUS POPULATION

30 The term Indigenous is used in this publication to refer to Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. All ABS Indigenous population statistics are based on responses to the ABS standard question for Indigenous identification, which is used in self-enumerated collections. The same census question has been used to determine Indigenous status (but not its component peoples) since the 1981 Census.

31 Until 1967, section 127 of the Constitution required the exclusion of 'Aboriginal natives' from estimates of the population of Australia. 'Aboriginal natives' were interpreted as being people who had more than 50% Aboriginal 'blood'. This provision was repealed with the proclamation of the Constitution Alteration (Aboriginals) Act 1967 so that since 10 August 1967 population statistics were to officially include 'full-blooded' Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Population estimates were backdated to 1961 to include Indigenous persons, however, births and deaths of the Indigenous population have only been included in data since 1966.

32 From the 1971 census onwards, Indigenous persons have no longer been asked to state their degree of Indigenous descent. In 1996, for example, the census question asked 'Is the person of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander origin?'. Changing social attitudes, political developments, improvements in census coverage and a broader definition of 'Aboriginal' and 'Torres Strait Islander' are likely to have contributed to the rapidly rising numbers of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people that have been recorded since 1971.

33 The latest available Indigenous population estimates are 2006 census based.

34 For further information refer to the ABS Occasional Paper Population Issues, Indigenous Australians, 1996 (cat. no. 4708.0).


Indigenous population estimates

35 Experimental estimates of the Indigenous population were first produced by the ABS in 1994 for the years 1986 to 1991 (cat. no. 3230.0). Estimates for 1991 to 1996 based on the 1996 census were published in 1998 (cat. no. 3230.0). Estimates for 1991 to 2001 based on 2001 census were published in Experimental Estimates and Projections, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, 1991 to 2009 (cat. no. 3238.0). A time series based on the 2006 census is scheduled for release in 2009.

36 Indigenous population estimates are experimental. The significant intercensal volatility in Indigenous census counts and the quality of data on births, deaths and migration do not support the standard approach to population estimation. The intercensal volatility can, in part, be attributed to changes to the Indigenous population other than natural increase or interstate migration. For further details see Feature Article 2 in the March quarter 2007 issue of Australian Demographic Statistics (cat. no. 3101.0).


POPULATION DISTRIBUTION

37 Unless otherwise indicated, population estimates are presented according to Australian Standard Geographic Classification (ASGC) boundaries as at period shown.

38 The regions specified in this publication are Statistical Divisions (SDs), Statistical Districts and Local Government Areas (LGAs). LGAs are legally designated areas over which incorporated local governments have responsibility. Statistical Divisions are defined, in broad terms, as socially and economically homogeneous regions characterised by identifiable links between the inhabitants. The Statistical Division is the largest and most stable spatial unit. Statistical Districts are selected, significant, predominately urban areas in Australia which are not located within a Capital City SD. Some Statistical Districts straddle state/territory borders (e.g. Gold Coast-Tweed Statistical District lies partly in Queensland and partly in New South Wales).

39 Population estimates based on the concept of 'usual residence' have been produced for LGAs since 1976. Prior to this, LGA population figures were calculated on an 'actual location' concept - that is, based on the number of persons actually present at that location at a given time. Estimates based on actual location are generally higher in areas which attract short-term migrants, such as tourist areas, and it is important to note this break in time series when comparing historical population estimates.

40 Caution must also be exercised when comparing different population estimates on different ASGC boundaries. Historical data are readily available on current boundaries, back to 2001. For further information see Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC), 2001 (cat. no. 1216.0) and Regional Population Growth, Australia (cat. no. 3218.0).


POPULATION AGE-SEX STRUCTURE

41 Annual estimates of the population by single year of age and sex for Australia as a whole commenced in 1921 and for the individual states and territories in 1962. Prior to these years, estimates of the population by age and sex were only available for census years.


BIRTHS

42 Registration of births is the responsibility of state and territory Registrars of Births, Deaths and Marriages and is based on data provided on an information form completed by the parent(s) of the child. This form is the basis of data provided to the ABS by individual Registrars for compilation into aggregate statistics. For further information see Births, Australia (cat. no. 3301.0).

43 Unless otherwise indicated, birth statistics refer to live births registered during the calendar year shown. There is usually an interval between the occurrence and registration of a birth, and as a result, some births occurring in one year are not registered until the following year, or even later. This can be caused by either a delay by the parent(s) in submitting a completed form to the registry, or a delay by the registry in processing the birth.

44 Birth statistics prior to 1969 are presented on the basis of state or territory of registration. From 1969 they are presented on the basis of the state or territory of usual residence of the mother, regardless of where in Australia the birth occurred or was registered. Births which take place outside Australia are excluded from the statistics.

45 Births to mothers who are usual residents of Australia's Other Territories are registered in other Australian states. Prior to 1993, births to mothers usually resident in Christmas Island and Cocos (Keeling) Islands were included with Offshore Areas and Migratory in Western Australia, while births to mothers usually resident in Jervis Bay Territory were included with the ACT.


DEATHS

46 Registration of deaths is the responsibility of state and territory Registrars of Births, Deaths and Marriages and is based on information supplied by a relative or other person acquainted with the deceased, or an official of the institution where the death occurred, and on information supplied by a medical practitioner or a coroner as to the cause of death. This information is supplied to the ABS by individual Registrars for compilation into aggregate statistics. For further information see Deaths, Australia (cat. no. 3302.0).

47 Unless otherwise indicated, death statistics refer to deaths registered during the calendar year shown. There is usually an interval between the occurrence and registration of a death, and as result, some deaths occurring in one year are not registered until the following year or even later.

48 Death statistics prior to 1971 are presented on the basis of state or territory of registration. From 1971 they are presented on the basis of the state or territory of usual residence of the deceased, regardless of where in Australia the death occurred or was registered.

49 Deaths of overseas visitors in Australia are included in the statistics, and are classified according to the state or territory in which the death was registered. Deaths of Australian residents which took place outside Australia are not included in the statistics.


War time

50 As deaths of Australian residents which took place overseas are not included in the statistics, deaths of Australian troops overseas in World War I are excluded. Similarly, Australian troops who died overseas during World War II are not included in death statistics, however they have been removed from the population estimates.


LIFE TABLES

51 A life table is a statistical model used to represent the mortality of a population. In its simplest form, a life table is generated from age-specific death rates and the resulting values are used to measure mortality, survivorship and life expectancy.

52 Life tables are presented separately for males and females. The life table depicts the mortality experience of a hypothetical group of newborn babies throughout their entire lifetime. It is based on the assumption that this group is subject to the age-specific mortality rates of the reference period. Typically this hypothetical group is 100,000 in size.

53 Since 1995, life tables produced by the ABS differ from those published prior to 1995 in a number of important respects. Firstly, they are based on three years of deaths and population data. This is intended to reduce the impact of year-to-year statistical variations, particularly at younger ages where there are small numbers of deaths, and at older ages where the population at risk is small. Secondly, the deaths and population data are based on Australian residents who are physically present in Australia over the three-year period (i.e. Australian residents temporarily overseas are excluded). Thirdly, they have been actuarially graduated on the same principles which were used for the quinquennial Australian life tables prepared by the Australian Government Actuary. For further information see Life Tables, Australia (cat. no. 3302.0.55.001).


MIGRATION

Net overseas migration

54 Conceptually net overseas migration (NOM) is based on an international travellers' duration of stay being in or out of Australia for 12 months or more. It is the difference between the number of incoming travellers who stay in Australia for 12 months or more and are added to the population and the number of outgoing travellers who leave Australia for 12 months or more and are subtracted from the population.

55 Estimates of NOM are derived from information provided on incoming and outgoing passenger cards, as well as other data supplied by the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC), formally the Department of Immigration and Multicultural Affairs (DIMA) and the Department of Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs (DIMIA).

56 Prior to July 1976 NOM was calculated by subtracting the number of total departures (permanent, long-term and short-term) out of Australia from the number of total arrivals (permanent, long-term and short-term) into Australia. From July 1976 to June 2006 NOM was calculated as permanent and long-term arrivals less permanent and long-term departures, plus an adjustment for the effect of category jumping. This adjustment was necessary because net permanent and long-term migration figures were affected by changes in travel intentions from short-term to permanent/long-term or vice versa. However, from September quarter 1997 to June quarter 2001, category jumping was set to zero due to deficiencies identified in measurement. For further details see Demographic Estimates and Projections: Concepts, Sources and Methods (cat. no. 3228.0).

57 The ABS has recently developed improved methods for estimating NOM. This has been used in estimating Australia's official population since September quarter 2006. Due to changes in the methods used to estimate NOM, caution should be exercised when comparing estimates over time. The key change is the introduction of a '12/16 month rule' for determining a person's residency in Australia, replacing the previous '12/12 month rule'. The 12/16 rule requires a person to be in or absent from Australia for 12 months within a 16 month period, compared with a continuous 12 month period under the 12/12 rule. Estimates of NOM up to June quarter 2006 use the previous methods for estimating NOM (12/12 rule) unless specified as using the improved methodology for earlier periods.

58 For general information on the new method see Chapter 3: Net Overseas Migration in Migration, Australia, 2006-07 (cat. no. 3412.0). For more detailed information on the improved NOM estimation methods see Information Paper: Statistical Implications of Improved Methods for Estimating Net Overseas Migration, Australia, 2007 (cat. no. 3107.0.55.005) and Information Paper: Improved Methods for Estimating Net Overseas Migration, Australia, 2006 (cat. no. 3107.0.55.003).


Category jumping and migration adjustment

59 Category jumping is a measure of the discrepancy between movements recorded as short-term, long-term or permanent at the time of movement, and the category of movement recorded at the completion of a journey. Twelve months after a reference year it can be determined whether the number of initially-recorded short-term, long-term and permanent arrivals and departures match actual patterns of movement.

60 Estimates of category jumping were introduced in 1977, however due to deficiencies identified in the measurement of category jumping, estimates for the September quarter 1997 to the June quarter 2001 were set to zero. Following a review, a new measure of category jumping (referred to more simply as the 'migration adjustment') was introduced from the September quarter 2001. For further information see the Technical Note in the September quarter 2005 issue of Australian Demographic Statistics (cat. no. 3101.0) and ABS Demography Working Paper 2003/5 - Net Overseas Migration: Adjusting for Actual Duration of Stay or Absence (cat. no. 3137.0). Adjustments applied to overseas migration estimates have also been discussed in a special article in the 2002-03 issue of Migration, Australia (cat. no. 3412.0).


War time

61 During World War I, troops leaving Australia were regarded as emigrants, while those returning were regarded as immigrants. This largely explains the record loss in 1916, and a large migration gain in 1919.

62 During World War II, troop movements between September 1939 and June 1947 were excluded from calculations of overseas migration.


Interstate migration

63 Net interstate migration is the difference between the number of people who have changed their place of usual residence by moving into a given state or territory and the number of people who have changed their place of usual residence by moving out of that state or territory. The difference can be either positive or negative.

64 Australia has never had a comprehensive register of interstate movers and therefore estimates of migration between the states and territories have been based on other data sources, such as numbers of air, rail, sea and bus passengers travelling interstate, child endowment recipients, electoral rolls, and family allowance data.

65 From 1986, data on interstate migration have been derived from information on interstate change of address advised by Medicare benefit recipients to Medicare Australia and to the Department of Defence in the case of the military. The ABS adjusts Medicare Australia data to make allowance for the number of persons who do not inform Medicare of their change of residence. Further details are available in Demography Working Paper 2004/1 - Review of Interstate Migration Method (cat. no. 3106.0.55.001) and Demographic Estimates and Projections: Concepts, Sources and Methods (cat. no. 3228.0).


COUNTRY OF BIRTH

66 Country of birth classifications used by the ABS and preceding statistical agencies have changed over time. Tables presented in Australian Historical Population Statistics display the country of birth classifications in existence at the time of production of the data. The current classification used is the Standard Australian Classification of Countries (SACC). For more detailed information see Standard Classification of Countries (SACC) (cat. no. 1269.0) and Migration, Australia (cat. no. 3412.0).


OVERSEAS ARRIVALS AND DEPARTURES

67 Statistics on overseas arrivals and departures (OAD) relate to the number of movements of travellers rather than the number of travellers. Care should be taken when using permanent and long-term movements data as it is known that some individuals who travel multiple times in a year are counted each time they cross Australia's borders. Permanent and long-term movements in this release are not an appropriate source of migration statistics. For further information see Overseas Arrivals and Departures, Australia (cat. no. 3401.0) and Information Paper: Statistical Implications of Improved Methods for Estimating Net Overseas Migration, Australia, 2007 (cat. no. 3107.0.55.005).

68 OAD statistics are derived from a combination of full enumeration and sampling. All permanent movements and all movements with a duration of stay of one year of more are fully enumerated. All movements with a duration of stay of less than one year are sampled. Statistics relating to these movements are therefore estimates which may differ from statistics which would have been obtained if details of all movements had been processed.

69 Prior to 1959 overseas arrivals and departures were classified as either permanent or temporary. Revised questions for travellers were introduced in 1958 which enabled arrivals and departures previously classified as permanent to be subdivided (as from 1 January 1959) into two categories: permanent movement and long-term movement.


MARRIAGES

70 Marriage statistics in this publication refer to marriages registered by the Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages in each state and territory during the year shown. Coverage of marriage statistics in Australia is considered complete as all marriages are recorded as legal events. However, there is usually an interval between the celebration and the registration of a marriage and, as a result, some marriages celebrated in one year are not registered until the following year.

71 Marriage statistics are presented on the basis of state or territory in which the marriage is registered, rather than the state or territory of usual residence of the applicants. This may impact on the interpretation of state and territory data. Marriage rates are calculated using the number of marriages registered in a state or territory divided by the ERP of that state or territory. Therefore, they may not accurately reflect the crude marriage rate or the age-specific marriage rates of the usual residents of that state or territory. For further information see Marriages, Australia (cat. no. 3306.0.55.001).

72 Marriages of overseas residents visiting Australia are also included in these statistics. Marriages that occur in Australia's Other Territories are registered in the nearest state or territory where the marriage occurs.

73 Under the Marriage Act 1961, marriages may be celebrated by a minister of religion registered as an authorised celebrant, by a district registrar or by other persons authorised by the Attorney-General. The celebrant must be given notice of the intended marriage of at least one month but within six months before the marriage. A celebrant must transmit an official certificate of the marriage for registration to a District Registrar in the state or territory in which the marriage took place.

74 When analysing time series data it is important to note issues that arose in 1986, 1995 and 2004:
  • In 1986, the number of marriages registered in NSW was inflated due to delays in processing of registrations in 1984 and 1985 which were subsequently made up in 1986. The number of actual registrations and registrations adjusted for these delays, and their effects on crude marriage rates for NSW and Australia have been calculated, see the 2002 issue of Marriages and Divorces, Australia (cat. no. 3310.0).
  • In 1995 there were delays in the registration of marriages, as well as budgetary constraints. This led to the ABS only processing limited data on marriages in 1995: state or territory of registration, date of marriage, age of parties at marriage and previous marital status of parties. Full processing then resumed for 1996.
  • In 2004, marriage registrations were sampled for the larger states of NSW, Victoria, Queensland and SA, while the other states and territories were fully enumerated. Sampled forms were subject to full processing. For an explanation and calculation of the sampling errors see the 2004 issue of Marriages, Australia (cat. no. 3306.0.55.001).


DIVORCES

75 Divorce data are compiled by the ABS from information supplied by the Family Court in respect of each application which resulted in the granting of a decree absolute. The Family Law Act 1975 came into operation throughout Australia on 5 January 1976, repealing the Matrimonial Causes legislation which had been operative since 1961. Under Family Law legislation the irretrievable breakdown of marriage is the only ground on which a divorce is granted. This ground is established by the husband and wife having lived apart for 12 months or more and there being no reasonable likelihood of reconciliation. Applications for nullity of marriage under Family Law legislation must be on the ground that the marriage is void because of failure to meet a legal requirement such as that neither party be already lawfully married to another person. There is no provision for judicial separation under Family Law legislation. For further information see Divorces, Australia (cat. no. 3307.0.55.001).

76 Unless otherwise indicated, divorce statistics refer to divorces registered (granted) during the calendar year shown. In the interpretation of the data it is important to note that not all divorces applied for are granted in the same year. Divorce applications are usually handled by a court registrar, rather than a judge, and are usually dealt with relatively quickly. However, around 25% of divorces applied for in a particular year are granted in the following year. The availability of registrars, and the complexity of the cases brought before them, can affect the number of divorces granted in any one year.

77 Divorce statistics are presented on the basis of state or territory of registration, which is based on the location of the Family Court, or Federal Magistrates Court where the divorce is granted and registered. These data may give a biased view of divorces in particular states or territories because some Family Courts have responsibility for hearing divorce cases relating to other states or territories. The Family Courts most affected are Brisbane and the ACT. Due to the large number of divorces granted in the ACT to usual residents of other states and territories, the crude divorce rate and age-specific divorce rates for the ACT are not produced.

78 Divorces of persons usually resident in Other Territories are registered in the nearest state or territory. For example, divorces of residents of Jervis Bay would generally be registered in NSW.

79 Since September 2000 Family Court Registries have supplied data on divorces granted by both the Family Court of Australia and the newly formed Federal Magistrates Court of Australia (formerly known as the Federal Magistrates Service, and also known as the Federal Magistrates Court). The Family Court of Australia (FCA) and the Federal Magistrates Court (FMC) are independent courts of justice that have concurrent jurisdiction in some areas of Federal Law, including Family Law. This introduction of the Federal Magistrates Court has had a slight impact on the number of divorces granted in 2000 and 2001.


MARITAL STATUS

80 Population estimates by marital status are based on the concept of registered marital status. Registered marital status is a person's relationship status in terms of whether he or she has, or has had, a registered marriage with another person.

81 For ERP by marital status, persons age 14 years and under are automatically classified as 'Never Married'.

82 The latest available ERP by marital status data are 2001 (based on the 2001 Census).


ACCURACY OF DATA

83 In commentary based on statistics in this publication, it is recommended that the relevant statistics be rounded. All data are affected by errors in reporting and processing. Registered birth, death, marriage and divorce data are also affected by delays in registration. While unrounded figures are provided in tables, accuracy to the last digit is not claimed and should not be assumed. No reliance should be placed on statistics with small values.


ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

84 ABS publications draw extensively on information provided freely by individuals, businesses, governments and other organisations. Their continued cooperation is very much appreciated; without it, the wide range of statistics published by the ABS would not be available. Information received by the ABS is treated in strict confidence as required by the Census and Statistics Act, 1905.


CONFIDENTIALITY

85 The Census and Statistics Act, 1905 provides the authority for the ABS to collect statistical information, and requires that statistical output shall not be published or disseminated in a manner that is likely to enable the identification of a particular person or organisation. This requirement means that the ABS must take care and make assurances that any statistical information about individual respondents cannot be derived from published data.

86 Some techniques used to guard against identification or disclosure of confidential information in statistical tables are suppression of sensitive cells, and random adjustments to cells with very small values.

87 Data prior to 1971 are displayed as previously published. For census tables from 1971 onwards cell values of less than 3 have been randomised to assist in the preservation of confidentiality of information. Some cell values have been suppressed and are not available for publication but included in totals where applicable. In these cases data may not sum to totals due to the confidentialisation of individual cells.


ABS PUBLICATIONS

88 ABS publications which may be of interest to users include:

OTHER PUBLICATIONS

89 Other publications which may be of interest to users include:
  • Australians: Historical Statistics, Editor Wray Vamplew; Fairfax, Syme and Weldon Associates (1987)
  • Immigration and Ethnicity, Charles A. Price, Commonwealth Department of Immigration and Multicultural Affairs (1996)
  • Trans-Tasman Migration: Trends, Causes and Consequences, Editor Gordon A. Carmichael, Bureau of Immigration Research (1993)
  • The Aboriginal Population of Australia, L.R. Smith, Australian National University Press, Canberra (1980)


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