3413.0 - Migrant Statistics News, Apr 2013  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 24/04/2013   
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It is a pleasure to bring you the first Migrant Statistics Newsletter for 2013. The National Migrant Statistics Unit (NMSU) and indeed many other areas within the ABS have been very busy bringing quality timely and relevant migrant data to the fore. It is particularly exciting that efforts towards increasing the pool of migrant related data is happening on many fronts in the ABS.

In February, months of hard work was brought to fruition with the release of a new Census QuickStats product - QuickStats Country of Birth. Over the past year the NMSU have worked with the Census Outputs team to design and build a product suitable for anyone wanting quick summary information about migrants from a selected range of countries (compared with all overseas born residents and the Australian born population) in a range of geographic areas. I encourage you to take a look and let us know what you think.

Much more is happening on the Census front. The NMSU is currently using 2011 Census data to update the Migrant Data Matrices product to bring you tailored data cubes highlighting key Census variables of interest with a migrant focus. The updates will be released in June.

The Census Data Enhancement project (using probabilistic methods to link the 2011 Census with the Department of Immigration and Citizenship's (DIAC) Settlement Database (SDB)) is also in full swing and an information paper looking at the quality of the linkages is due for release in July this year. A statistical publication with accompanying tabular information will also be released later in the year.

In addition, we are already looking forward to the 2016 Census. The ABS is halfway through the 2016 external consultation process. An article is included in this newsletter from the ABS Census Communication and Engagement team regarding the Census consultation phase. The consultation phase includes a discussion of potential new topics and possible improvements to existing topics and will run until 31 May 2013.

Another project that has kept us busy in the NMSU over the past six months is the highly anticipated data integration feasibility project that will determine if the Australian Taxation Office's Personal Income Data can be successfully linked to DIAC's SDB using statistical techniques to produce high quality timely economic data for migrants.

A new article looking at the Characteristics of Migrant Families was also completed and added to our Perspectives of Migrants series in March.

I should also mention that on 14 March the Essential Statistical Assets for Australia, 2013 (cat. no. 1395.0) was released. The purpose of the initiative is to allow for effective prioritisation of investment, focus and effort within the National Statistical Service by identifying those essential statistical assets which are critical to decision making in a complex and sometimes fragmented information environment across Australia. This initiative is intended to identify the core set of essential statistical assets generated by governments and use this list to support the prioritisation of ongoing investment in these assets. Both the ABS Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey and DIAC's Settlement Database have been included in the 2013 list of Essential Statistical Assets for Australia which is great news for users of migrant related data.

So please read on to find out more about the projects and products I've highlighted here. As usual I hope you find the information informative and interesting. Please feel free to contact the NMSU with any questions, comments or suggestions.

Andrew Middleton

Culture, Recreation and Migrant Statistics