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1387.3 - Queensland in Review, 2003  
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Contents >> General >> 2002 Queensland Regional Statistics Overview

The following is an extract from Regional Statistics, Queensland 2002 (cat. no. 1362.3)


2002 QUEENSLAND REGIONAL STATISTICS OVERVIEW

Queensland is a state of contrasts. This overview illustrates some of these contrasts whilst focusing on the statistical differences between metropolitan and non-metropolitan areas. It brings together selected economic, social and environmental statistics from both ABS and non-ABS sources to highlight aspects of life in Queensland.


PHYSICAL ENVIRONMENT

Covering approximately 1,734,190 sq km, Queensland is the second largest state in Australia. Including islands, it has 13,350 km of coastline, second only to Western Australia. Queensland has almost 1,000 islands including the world’s largest sand island, Fraser Island. In area, Queensland is equivalent to the entire British Isles and Western Europe and is five times the size of Japan but has a population less than that of the Sydney Statistical Division (SD).

The environment varies from tropical rainforests in the north-east to channel country in the south-west. The Great Dividing Range, running roughly north to south, acts as a watershed that separates the state into a fertile coastal plain on the eastern side and drier interior in the west.

The lands and soils of Queensland are an essential resource that support much of our natural production. Around 87% of the state is used as grazing land, whilst protected areas cover 4% and forest and timber reserves a further 2.4%. Land management is needed to prevent the degradation of our soils, currently under threat from unsustainable agricultural practices, vegetation clearing, urban development, introduced species and land contamination.


CLIMATE

Weather conditions can vary dramatically across the state. Most of the northern regions above the Tropic of Capricorn experience a tropical climate with hot wet summers and mild dry winters. During the wet season, November to April, tropical cyclones can bring devastating winds and rain to these regions. From May to October, however, the regions experience mild sunny weather.

One of the most outstanding features about Queensland’s rainfall is its great variability with the highest rainfall occurring in the 6 months between November and April. The concentration of rain during this time is greatest in the north of the state, reaching a maximum in the Gulf of Carpentaria region. In southern Queensland good summer rainfall is slightly less reliable, except for the coastal fringe, which has an assured summer rainfall.

Queensland has one of the highest annual daily averages of sunshine for Australia. The highest daily averages of bright or direct sunshine occur in October when the state records 8-11 hours per day. A comparison of the average number of hours of sunshine per day for Australian capital cities during the winter months of June to August reinforces Queensland’s claim to the ‘Sunshine State’ title. Only Darwin has recorded a higher average during this period.

DAILY AVERAGE HOURS OF WINTER SUNSHINE, June to August

Graph - daily average hours of winter sunshine, Jun to August for all capital cities.
Source: Bureau of Meteorology.


POPULATION GROWTH 1

For the period June 1996 to June 2001, Queensland was the second fastest growing state or territory (behind the Northern Territory), with an increase in estimated resident population (ERP) of 296,400 people or an average annual growth rate of 1.7%.

Four-fifths (81.5%) of Queensland’s growth for the period occurred in the south-east corner of the state with an increase of 241,500 people. As a result of this growth the proportion of the Queensland population living in the south-east region has continued to increase steadily, from 62.4% in 1991 to 64.0% in 1996, and then to 65.5% in 2001.

This region contains the two most populous local government areas (LGAs) in Queensland, the cities of Brisbane and Gold Coast. These areas experienced the largest increases in population in Queensland, and in Australia, between 1996 and 2001. Brisbane increased by 74,000 people (at an average rate of 1.7% per year) while the Gold Coast increased by 69,000 people (or 3.6% per year). New housing estates, particularly in the south, catered for the largest increases within Brisbane LGA.

LGAS WITH LARGEST POPULATION INCREASE FROM 1996 TO 2001
GRAPH - LGAS WITH LARGEST POPULATION INCREASE FROM1996 TO 2001
Source: Regional Population Growth, Australia and New Zealand, 1991 to 2001 (cat. no. 3218.0).

Coastal areas remain popular with the cities of Thuringowa and Townsville in the Northern SD increasing by 7,600 and 5,700 people respectively (representing average annual growth rates of 3.1% and 1.3%). Cairns (C) in the Far North SD increased by 7,000 people at an average rate of 1.2% per year.

The Wide Bay-Burnett SD increased by 12,600 with Hervey Bay (C) accounting for 4,600 people, a rate of 2.3% per year. The Far North SD recorded an increase of 12,100 people reflecting an average growth rate of 1.1% per year, while the Northern SD increased by 11,700 people reflecting an average annual growth rate of 1.3%.

Employment in the mining industry contributed to Burke (S) in the North West SD experiencing the fastest population growth in Queensland over the period 1996 to 2001. Burke increased at an average rate of 7.9% per year between 1996 and 2001, representing a total increase of 540 people.


LGAS WITH FASTEST POPULATION GROWTH
GRAPH - LGAS WITH FASTEST POPULATION GROWTH
Note: Average annual growth rate. Excludes LGAs with an estimated resident population of less than 1,000 at June 1996.
Source: Regional Population Growth, Australia and New Zealand, 1991 to 2001 (cat. no. 3218.0).

For the period June 1996 to June 2001, Central West SD was the only Queensland SD to record a decrease in population, declining by 80 people. The population of the North West SD remained the same and the South West SD recorded a small increase in population. This represents a change in the trends for the previous 5 year period (June 1991-June 1996) when the populations of the Central West, North West, and South West SDs declined (down 810, 2,300 and 2,700 people respectively).

LGAS WITH LARGEST POPULATION DECLINE FROM 1996-2001
GRAPH - LGAS WITH LARGEST POPULATION DECLINE FROM1996–2001
Source: Regional Population Growth, Australia and New Zealand, 1991 to 2001 (cat. no. 3218.0).

The largest decreases in population in Queensland were recorded in the mining areas of Duaringa (S) and Mount Isa (C), down 1,600 and 1,200 people respectively between 1996 and 2001. The population of Rockhampton (C) decreased by 1,100 people over the five year period to June 2001, partly associated with an emerging trend for people to reside in Livingstone (S) and to commute to work in Rockhampton (C). Duaringa (S) also experienced the highest rate of population decline of all Queensland LGAs for the period (down 3.7% per year).


LGAS WITH FASTEST POPULATION DECLINE, QUEENSLAND
GRAPH - LGAS WITH FASTEST POPULATION DECLINE, QUEENSLAND
Note: Average annual growth rate. Excludes LGAs with an estimated resident population of less than 1,000 at June 1996.
Source: Regional Population Growth, Australia and New Zealand, 1991 to 2001 (cat. no. 3218.0).


WAGES AND SALARY EARNERS

In Queensland, there were 1,329,914 wage and salary earners in 1998-99. This accounted for 18.3% of the total number of wage and salary earners in Australia; consistent with the Queensland population as a proportion of the total Australian population (18.7%). In 1998-99, the average wage and salary income for Queensland was $29,965, an increase of 4.3% ($1,237) from the previous year. The average for Queensland was 7.1% lower than the Australian average ($32,271) - only Tasmania and South Australia had lower average wage and salary incomes.

Moreton SD reported the largest percentage increase in the number of wage and salary earners of 6.1% (13,086 persons) over the three years of data for 1996-97 to 1998-99. Four of Queensland’s 11 statistical divisions recorded declines in the number of wage and salary earners - the Far North SD had the largest decline with a fall of 2.8% (2,410 persons).

In 1998-99, almost half (652,356 persons) of Queensland’s wage and salary earners resided in the Brisbane SD, where the reported average wage and salary income increased from $28,849 in 1996-97 to $31,353 in 1998-99 (8.7%). The North West SD had the highest average income by wage and salary earners of $35,045, an increase of 8.3%.


AVERAGE WAGE AND SALARY INCOME, Statistical Divisions, Queensland-1997-98 and 1998-99
GRAPH - AVERAGE WAGE AND SALARY I NCOME,  Statistical Divisions, Queensland - 1997-98 and 1998-99
Source: Regional Wage and Salary Earner Statistics, Australia (cat. no. 5673.0).

North West, Mackay and Fitzroy were the only three statistical divisions in Queensland to report averages higher than both the Queensland and Australian averages in each of the three years to 1998-99. During these years, Mackay also had the smallest increase in average wage and salary income of 2.3%. In 1996-97, the reported average annual wage and salary income in Mackay SD was 18.2% higher than the Queensland average. By 1998-99 this had dropped to 11.8%.

In 1998-99, just over 10% (14) of Queensland’s 125 LGAs reported average wage and salary incomes exceeding the state and national averages. An additional eight LGAs reported averages above the Queensland average but below the national average. Unlike the other eastern states, LGAs reporting the highest average wage and salary incomes were located outside of the metropolitan area. The 11 LGAs with the highest averages for Queensland were located in the Mackay, Fitzroy and North West SDs. Around 80% (103) of Queensland’s LGAs reported averages below $30,000.

LGAs within the Mackay and Fitzroy SDs reported the highest average wage and salary income in 1998-99. These were Broadsound (S) ($51,162), Belyando (S) ($48,779) and Peak Downs (S) ($48,540). Despite recording the highest average wage and salary incomes in 1998-99, Broadsound (S) and Belyando (S) recorded a decline of 2.0% and 6.6% respectively over the three years of data for 1996-97 to 1998-99.

Isisford, in the Central West SD, recorded the lowest average wage and salary income in 1998-99 with $22,461 (25.0% below the Queensland average). The next four LGAs reporting the lowest average wage and salary incomes were all located within the Wide Bay-Burnett SD: Mundubbera (S), Perry (S), Kolan (S) and Gayndah (S) reported averages of $22,473, $22,540, $22,693 and $22,986, respectively.

It is important to note that these data exclude persons in their own business, such as farmers, who are not classed as wage and salary earners. Consequently, the data may reflect different earnings averages than expected in some areas.


LABOUR FORCE

There was an average of approximately 1,702,400 persons employed in Queensland for the year ended November 2001. Of these, 45.6% were from the Brisbane SD and 54.4% were from the balance of the state.

The industry employing the highest number of full and part-time employees was Retail trade with approximately 266,000 (15.7% of all employed persons), followed by Property and business services with approximately 183,000 (10.8%). The Electricity, gas and water supply industry employed the least with approximately 12,000 (0.7%) followed by the Mining industry with 19,000 (1.1%) employees.


HIGHEST AND LOWEST PERCENTAGES OF EMPLOYEES BY INDUSTRY
GRAPH - HIGHEST AND LOWEST PERCENTAGES OF EMPLOYEES BY INDUSTRY
Source: Labour Force, Australia (cat. no. 6203.0); ABS data available on request, Labour Force Survey.

Retail trade and Property and business services industries were the two highest employing industries in the state. Retail trade was evenly distributed between Brisbane SD and the balance of the state with 15.3% and 16.0% respectively of those employed, whilst Property and business services accounted for 13.1% of those employed in the Brisbane SD and 8.6% in the balance of the state.


BRISBANE SD - EMPLOYMENT BY INDUSTRY
GRAPH - BRISBANE SD - EMPLOYMENT BY INDUSTRY
Source: Labour Force, Australia (cat. no. 6203.0); ABS data available on request, Labour Force Survey.

The Agriculture, forestry and fishing industry employed 10.3% of employed persons in the balance of the state, being the second highest employing industry for this area, whilst accounting for only 0.8% in the Brisbane SD. The industries of Manufacturing and Health and community services followed with 9.4% and 8.8% respectively of employed persons in the balance of the state.

The industries of Manufacturing and Health and community services in the Brisbane SD provided employment for 11.9% and 10.0% respectively, following a similar pattern to the balance of the state in being the third and fourth highest employing industries.


BALANCE OF STATE - EMPLOYMENT BY INDUSTRY
GRAPH - BALANCE OF STATE - EMPLOYMENT BY INDUSTRY
Source: Labour Force, Australia (cat. no. 6203.0); ABS data available on request, Labour Force Survey.


INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY

Activity on the Internet continued to increase in Queensland during 2001. At the end of September 2001, Queensland subscribers to the Internet accounted for 19.2% of the Australian total of 4,273,000 subscribers. The number of subscribers in Queensland peaked at 856,000 by the end of June 2001 and dropped by 4.2% to 820,000 by the end of the September quarter. However, this was still an increase of more than 6.4% on the number of subscribers at 30 September 2000.

The majority of Internet subscribers in Queensland are based in the Brisbane SD. This region accounted for 460,000 or 56.1% of all Queensland subscribers. Moreton SD had the second greatest number of subscribers with 152,000 (18.5%).

At the end of September 2001, Queensland had 153 Internet Service Providers (ISPs), a decrease of 24 (13.6%) from the same period in 2000. The majority of ISPs service the south-east regions of the state (the Brisbane and Moreton Statistical Divisions) where the bulk of Queensland subscribers live. The 153 ISPs provided 408 Points of Presence (POPs) with 90,572 access lines for the 820,000 subscribers.


INTERNET SERVICE PROVIDERS BY STATISTICAL DIVISION
GRAPH - INTERNET SERVICE PROVIDERS BY STATISTICAL DIVISION
Source: Internet Activity, Australia (cat. no. 8153.0).

Queensland subscribers downloaded 193 million megabytes (Mbs) of data during the September 2001 quarter, with 127 million Mbs or 65.8% downloaded by subscribers in the Brisbane SD alone. The average data downloaded outside the Brisbane SD was highest in Fitzroy with 215 Mbs per subscriber, followed by Moreton SD and Far North SD with 192 Mbs per subscriber each, and the Darling Downs and Mackay Statistical Divisions with 186 Mbs each. The state average for downloads per subscriber was 236 Mbs.


SAFETY IN THE HOME

The 2001 Queensland Supplementary Survey conducted in October was Safety in the Home. This topic was previously surveyed in the 1996 State Supplementary Survey. In general, results of the Safety in the Home survey were similar across the Brisbane Major Statistical Region (MSR) and the Balance of Queensland MSR.

Of the estimated 1,409,900 households in Queensland in October 2001, 643,400 (45.6%) were located in the Brisbane MSR and 766,500 (54.4%) were located in the Balance of Queensland MSR.

The proportion of Queensland homes with smoke detectors increased from 38.7% to 69.1% over the five years between October 1996 and October 2001. A higher proportion of Brisbane households (72.6%) had smoke alarms compared with households in the rest of Queensland (66.1%).

While smoke alarms have become a more common safety feature in the home, other areas of home safety have not changed significantly over the past five years. Almost half of all households had an adjustable hot water thermostat (48.6%) and just over one-quarter (26.2%) had anti-slip surfaces or strips, including rubber mats, used or fitted in the bath or shower.


ALL HOUSEHOLDS, SELECTED SAFETY FEATURES, 1996 and 2001
GRAPH - ALL HOUSEHOLDS, SELECTED SAFETY FEATURES, 1996 and 2001
Source: Safety in the Home, Queensland (cat. no. 4387.3).

Just over one-fifth (20.6%) of all households had a swimming pool or outdoor spa. The most common precaution used to prevent children from drowning was ‘child resistant fencing/self locking gate’, with 82.0% protected this way. There were 271,300 households (19.2%) with playground equipment. The most popular type of playground equipment were swings (69.5%), followed by trampolines (48.8%).

There were 360,500 (25.6%) households with young children aged four years or less and 521,600 (37.0%) households with older persons aged 60 years or over. Households with young children or older persons were defined as those with at least one usual resident of that age group or which had at least one person of that age visit at least once a week, in the four weeks prior to the survey.

Households with young children and older people were more fire conscious with almost three-quarters (74.1% and 73.1% respectively) fitted with smoke alarms. Anti-slip surfaces or strips, including rubber mats, used or fitted in the bath or shower were reported in more households with young children and older people (30.5% of households with young children and 33.5% of households with older people).

Households with young children were more likely to have at least one resident who had undertaken first aid training, whereas households with older persons were less likely to have at least one resident who had undertaken this training.


HOSPITALS

Queensland had a total of 15,924 hospital beds (including bed alternatives) available, on average, in 2000-01. Of these, 9,967 beds (62.6%) were in public hospitals and 5,957 (37.4%) were in private hospitals (including day surgery hospital beds). The total number of hospital beds in Queensland represented 4.4 beds per 1,000 persons. Over half of all available hospital beds (8,650 beds or 54.3%) were located in facilities outside the Brisbane SD.

During 2000-01, hospitals in Queensland treated 1.2 million admitted patients and provided 4.3 million days of hospitalisation to these patients. Hospital facilities within the Brisbane SD accounted for 52.4% of total patient days, or approximately 2.3 million patient days. Facilities in the balance of the state accounted for 47.6% of total patient days, or approximately 2.1 million patient days.

PROPORTION OF TOTAL PATIENT DAYS, QUEENSLAND-2000-01
GRAPH - PROPORTION OF TOTAL PATIENT DAYS, QUEENSLAND - 2000-01
Source: ABS data available on request, Private Health Establishments Collection; Queensland Health


TOURISM

Tourism is an important part of the Queensland economy with takings from accommodation of $1,345m in 2001, a decrease of 1.4% when compared with the previous calendar year. Takings were highest in the Gold Coast, Tropical North Queensland and Brisbane tourism regions 2 with respective contributions of 24.6%, 20.3% and 18.1% of the state total. This contrasted with the tourism regions of Bundaberg, Outback and Hervey Bay/Maryborough, which together accounted for only 3.7%.

Room occupancy rates were highest in the Brisbane (65.9%) and Gold Coast (64.1%) tourism regions and lowest in the Hervey Bay/Maryborough (45.9%) and Outback (48.7%) tourism regions. When compared to the previous year, occupancy rates in 2001 increased in six tourist regions, Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Darling Downs, Bundaberg and Fitzroy. This contrasted with declines in those rates in all other regions.


TOURISM REGIONS - ROOM OCCUPANCY RATE
GRAPH - TOURISM REGIONS - ROOM OCCUPANCY RATE
Source: Tourist Accommodation, Small Area Data, Queensland (cat. no. 8635.3.40.001).

Care should be exercised when assessing movements between September 2000 and September 2001 due to the significant events which occurred in these months. The Olympic Games were held in Sydney in September 2000 and both the attack on the United States of America and the demise of Ansett Airlines occurred in September 2001. Room nights occupied in Queensland rose by 4.3% to 1,011,300 between September 2000 and September 2001. Over that same period, the room occupancy rate increased by 2.3 percentage points to 64.1%.


BUILDING APPROVALS

In 2000-01, the Brisbane SD accounted for 62.3% of the value of non-residential building approvals in Queensland. Moreton SD represented 14.6% with Wide Bay-Burnett and the Far North Statistical Divisions both contributing 4.6% to the value of non-residential building approvals in Queensland.

Dwelling unit approvals in the Brisbane SD in 2000-2001 accounted for 48.9% of the state total. Moreton SD provided 29.7%, Northern and Wide Bay-Burnett SDs contributed 4.6% and 4.5% respectively to the number of Queensland dwelling unit approvals.


SMALL BUSINESS OPERATIONS

Small business is defined in terms of either income and/or expenses within the range of $10,000 to $5m per annum. In 1999-2000, total small business income in Queensland was $75,973m. The Brisbane and Moreton Statistical Divisions were the largest contributors with $35,207m (46.3%) and $15,535m (20.5%) respectively to the state total. Other statistical divisions with significant income were Darling Downs with $5,034m (6.6%) and Far North with $4,733m (6.2%). Each of the remaining regions had less than 5.0% of the state total.

Income for small businesses in the Brisbane, South West, Moreton and Darling Downs Statistical Divisions showed the strongest growth rates of 23.5%, 22.9%, 18.6% and 17.5% respectively between 1995-1996 and 1999-2000. These increases equate to average annual increases of 5.4%, 5.3%, 4.4% and 4.1% respectively. Small business income in all other Queensland regions increased by less than 10.0% over the five year period except for the North West SD which declined by 19.9%.


LOCAL GOVERNMENT FINANCE

Queensland has 125 local authorities which, in 2000-01, generated total revenue of $4,644m and incurred total expenses of $4,027m. This accounted for 27.4% of total Australian local government revenue and for 25.6% of expenses. The greatest source of revenue for the state was sales of goods and services ($2,074m), followed by taxation ($1,248m).

The five Queensland local government authorities with both the greatest revenue and expenses in 2000-01 were Brisbane, Gold Coast, Logan, Maroochy and Townsville, together accounting for 47% of Queensland's revenue and 47.7% of the state's expenses. The average revenue of Queensland LGAs during this period was $37.1m, while the average expenses were $32.2m. Diamantina in Central West Queensland had the highest per capita revenue ($31,800) and expenses ($31,500) in the state.

The LGAs with the highest levels of both assets and liabilities were all major urban centres with the top five in each case accounting for 50% of the assets and 57.9% of the liabilities of Queensland local government. Brisbane had both the greatest assets and liabilities in the state, making up 31.1% ($10,711m) and 36.2% ($1,350m) of the Queensland totals respectively. The average value of assets of Queensland LGAs was $276m and the average amount of liabilities was $30m.


Footnotes

1 The estimated resident population (ERP) is the official measure of the population of Australia. The ERP figures in this publication incorporate the results of the 2001 Census of Population and Housing. There are a number of conceptual differences between ERP figures and census counts. The concept of ERP links people to a place of usual residence which is one reason why figures can differ. For more detail, readers are referred to Demographic Estimates and Projections: Concepts, Sources and Methods, Statistical Concepts Library, on this site. The 2001 ERP figures are preliminary, with final estimates to be published in the 2001-02 edition of Regional Population Growth, Australia and New Zealand (cat. no. 3218.0), due for release in May 2003.

2 Tourism regions are defined by relevant state and territory tourist commissions or equivalent organisations. Details of the composition of tourism regions, including maps, are available on request from the ABS and the concordance between statistical local areas of the ASGC and the Queensland tourism regions may be found in Tourist Accommodation, Small Area Data, Queensland (cat. no. 8635.3.40.001).



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