1100.2 - Statistics Victoria (Newsletter), Sep 2007  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 12/10/2007   
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Statistics Victoria - Sept 2007

In this issue
What's happening in Victoria

    Glimpses of 2006 Census
    General Social Survey Victoria
    Data in the classroom
    Experimental Monetary Water Account
    Manufacturing and Mining Survey review
    Geographic classification review
    Gross State Product using production approach
Selected recent releases
    Directory of Education and Training Statistics
    Measures of Australia's Progress
    Regional Population Growth
    Population by Age and Sex
    Migrant Statistical Sources
    Australian Social Trends
    Sports and Physical Recreation
    Voluntary Work
    Water Use on Australian Farms
    Household Income and Income Distribution
    Government Benefits, Taxes and Household Income
    Selected Agricultural Commodities
    Retail and Wholesale Industries
Information papers, research papers & classifications
Other selected releases
ABS statistical training & information seminars
Points of contact


Glimpses of the 2006 Census of Population and Housing
Picture: ABS 2006 Census logo

First 2006 Census results were released 27/06/2007. Census Basic Community Profiles (cat. no. 2001.0) were released to the ABS website on 27/08/2007. These profiles are useful for providing a comprehensive set of statistical data for an area which you select. Best of all, this information is available free. Other available profile series include: Indigenous, time series, place of enumeration and expanded community. Second release data (including employment, industry and occupation) will be available free of charge on-line from 25 October. 'Community Profile Series at a Glance' (cat. no. 2001.0.55.002) provides a short two page overview of the Community Profile Series: format, geographic areas available, etc.

According to the 2006 Census, the average Victorian was 37.1 years old (median age), with males (36.2) slightly younger than females (38.0). They were most likely to be in a couple family with children: 48% of persons lived in this family type, with the remainder spread across a range of family and household types. At local government area level in Victoria, Queenscliffe (B) had the highest median age (53.3 years) and Melbourne (C) the lowest (28.0 years). Not unexpectedly, Queenscliffe (B) also had the highest proportion of older persons aged 65 and over (32.4%), while Melton (S) with a median age of 31.3 years, had the highest proportion of children aged under 5 (8.9%).

Victoria had 607,000 couple with children families (47% of all families). Two-thirds (406,000) of these were young families with children aged under 15 years. These families might also have included dependent students (aged 15-24 years) and non-dependent children still living with their parents.

Nine out of 10 (90.6%) couple families with young children lived in a separate house, with 4 bedrooms on average. Two-thirds of these families were paying off a mortgage. The median monthly mortgage repayment for young families in a separate house was $1,300. Victoria had the highest level of outright home ownership by young families in separate houses (18.0%) and lowest proportion renting (13.0%). Most couple families with young children (83.0% ) have some type of Internet connection at home, broadband being the most common connection type.

For every 100 females there were 96.4 males in Victoria, in part because women generally live longer than men. The average Victorian woman had given birth to 1.7 children (average number of children ever born) so far in her life. However, older women (aged 65 years or older) had given birth to an average 2.8 children. Women who had only recently given birth to their first child (first child ever born, less than 1 year old and counted with them at home) had a median age of 30.

For all Victorians aged 15 years and over, the 2006 Census recorded a median weekly gross personal income of $456. Men had a higher median income ($605) than women ($355). To some extent, this gender difference is due to older people (aged 65 years and over) generally having lower incomes (median $275), and relatively large numbers of women in the older age group. Women aged 15-64 years ($401) also had a median income that was lower than for men ($686) in the same age group, reflecting to some degree, lower pay levels and a higher incidence of part-time work for women. Median Victorian household income was $1,022, and median family income $1,170.

Of the 756,000 people who had arrived in Australia since 2001 to stay for one year or more, 31% settled in the statistical division (SD) of Sydney, 24% in Melbourne SD, 11% for both Perth SD and Brisbane SD, 5% in Adelaide SD and 3% in the Gold Coast SD.

New topics addressed in the 2006 Census included: internet connection; persons needing assistance with everyday activities due to a long-term health condition, disability or old age; provision of unpaid assistance to a person with a disability, long term illness or problems due to age; child care; voluntary work; and unpaid domestic work.

General Social Survey, Victoria, 2006

The General Social Survey provides a wide range of information for Australia, including: health, housing, education, work, income, financial stress, assets and liabilities, transport, social capital, voluntary work, family, community, and crime. This product includes 36 tables for different Victorian population groups and selected themes.

In Victoria during 2006, mean equivalised gross household income per week was higher in major cities ($899), than in inner regional ($634) and other areas ($595). Median mortgage payments per week mirrored this: major cities ($276), inner regional ($229), and other areas ($179). Median rent payments per week were: major cities ($184), inner regional ($130), and other areas ($132).

Four out of five people aged 18 years and over (80.2%) reported having face to face contact with family or friends living outside the household during the previous week. Most people (93.8%) felt they could get support in a time of crisis from persons living outside the household, while 29.7% provided support to relatives living outside the household. Full-time employment (47.7%) was more prevalent than part-time employment (18.1%), and 21.2% were retired from work.

Feeling 'unsafe or very unsafe' walking alone in the local area after dark affected 16.8% of people. Some 9.7% reported being a victim of physical or threatened violence in last 12 months, and 6.5% reported being victims of actual or attempted break-ins.

A disability or long-term health condition with core activity restriction affected 12.2% of persons generally, but 31.5% of those retired from the labour force. A core activity limitation is when a person needs help, has difficulty or uses aids or equipment with self care, mobility or communication. While 14.6% of people assessed their health as fair/poor, this rose to 36.8% of persons retired from the labour force. Some 20.0% of persons reported difficulty accessing service providers, although this was less common amongst those in major cities (15.8%) than in inner regional (28.8%) and other areas (42.1%).

Internet access at home was available to 57.7% of Victorians in the previous 12 months; although this dropped to 20.3% of 65-74 year olds, 24.7% of persons retired from work, and 48.3% living in 'other areas' (eg. outside major cities and inner regional). A home owner with a mortgage (71.4%) or renter with private landlord (63.5%) were more likely than a home owner without a mortgage (42.1%, perhaps an age effect) to access the internet at home.

Moving house in the last 5 years was reported by 38.8%, but rose for unemployed (57.9%), people living in state housing (51.3%) and renters with private landlords (82.3%). Most people (88.1%) had access to a motor vehicle to drive, although this fell to 55.2% of unemployed and 49.8% in state housing.

To explore this dataset further, refer to 'General Social Survey, Victoria, 2006' (cat. no. 4159.2.55.001, released 23/07/2007). Victorian level data is provided in Excel spreadsheet format.

Condition of Main Roads in Victoria

Within Melbourne during 2005-2006, Local Government Areas (LGA) with the highest proportion of rough main roads were Yarra (11.8% of main roads), Melbourne (9.2%) and Maribyrnong (8.9%). Outside Melbourne, Mansfield (19.9%) had the highest proportion of rough main roads, followed by Strathbogie (19.0%), Yarriambiack (18.4%) and Pyrenees (17.6%). This and other information on the condition of main roads in Victoria are contained in the June quarter 2007 edition of State and Regional Indicators, Victoria (SRIV).

SRIV is a quarterly publication that contains recently released statistical information about the whole of Victoria. Data are sourced from ABS and non-ABS collections, and provide economic, social and environment measures. Data are presented for varying levels of geography, including: Victoria, Melbourne and Balance of Victoria, and down to LGA for some series; and often allow comparison over time.

Core data, such as estimated resident population, state final demand, labour force statistics, price indexes, building approvals, air quality, and water storage volume is complemented by periodic annual data; including the condition of main roads, recorded crime offences, life expectancy at birth, government owned housing stock and other datasets. The June quarter SRIV also contains two feature articles: personal safety; and examination of Victorian water consumption by industry and household sector, the system of water access entitlements and allocations, and level of water trading occurring both within Victoria and interstate.

For these and other Victorian statistics see ‘State and Regional Indicators, Victoria’ (cat. no. 1367.2). Contact Pam Boulton on Melbourne (03) 9615 7880 or email <victoria.statistics@abs.gov.au>.

Bringing data to life in the classroom

The new Education Services webpages were launched on 2 July. The pages are more user and classroom friendly, with separate sites for teachers and students: <https://www.abs.gov.au/teachers> and <https://www.abs.gov.au/students>. Resources include statistical games; ABS data sets formatted for easy classroom use; activities for mathematics, geography and economics; and statistical stories. Our aim is to assist educators to bring data and statistics to life in the school classroom,” said Paul Taylor (Director, ABS Education Services).

Image: Teacher AreaFor Teachers
Educational resources to bring data to life in the classroom.

Classroom activities
PD materials
Real statistics and data

Go to ABS Education Services
For Teachers.
Image: Student AreaFor Students
Discover more about the ABS and data from around Australia.

Games and puzzles
What does the ABS do?
Data you can use

Go to ABS Education Services
For Students.

Classroom activities have been designed by education professionals, and linked to the curriculum of each state and territory to make it easy for teachers to incorporate them into their existing programs. The student page includes a series of online learning objects produced by The Le@rning Federation, specially selected to explain statistical concepts in a fun and engaging way. The ABS has an important role to play in increasing statistical literacy in the community, and one way we can do this is by assisting schools in teaching the importance of good quality statistical information, Mr Taylor said.

For further information call Education Services on 1800 623 273 or email <education@abs.gov.au>.

An Experimental Monetary Water Account for Australia, 2004-05. (cat. no. 4610.0.55.005) Released 15/08/2007. First Issue

Physical water accounts were produced by ABS in 'Water Account, Australia' (cat. no. 4610.0), for 1993-94 to 1996-97, 2000-01 and 2004-05. While data in the Water Account can theoretically be linked to economic data such as presented in the national accounts, there is little monetary data in the water account itself to facilitate such linking. This publication presents experimental monetary water accounts that allow some physical flows of water to be matched with monetary transactions for 2004-05. Linking monetary and physical water accounts provides information useful for determining efficient water allocation, achieving cost recovery for water infrastructure assets and analysing trade-offs between alternative water and economic policies. The data available at present for compiling monetary water accounts for Australia are limited and of varying quality. This publication discusses gaps and deficiencies that need to be addressed to support a more complete monetary water account. State government reports used include the 'Victorian Water Review, 2004-05'.

The Water Account showed that 11,160 Gigalitres (GL) of water was supplied to the Australian economy (i.e. to industry, government and households) by the Water Supply, Sewerage and Drainage Services industry in 2004-05. This amount included 2,022 GL of water losses and 842 GL of water provided to the environment. Excluding these amounts, some 8,296 GL of water was distributed to users. Revenue of $3,514 million was generated from the supply of urban and rural distributed water. Industry value added for the Australian Water Supply, Sewerage and Drainage Services industry was $5,101 million. Some State level data are presented.

In 2004-05, total value of distributed water supply in Australia was $3,514 million. Households paid $2,147 million (61% of total expenditure) for distributed water, and used 23 per cent of total distributed water. Agriculture, forestry and fishing used 64% of total distributed water, and contributed 8 per cent of total expenditure. Victorian households had the lowest expenditure on urban distributed water per household ($236) and Northern Territory the highest ($424).

Review of ABS Annual Industry Survey Program: Manufacturing and Mining

ABS is redeveloping its annual industry survey program, with a view to developing a core economy-wide survey that provides financial data at broad industry level. Supplementing this will be a flexible and responsive program of discrete industry studies each year, with the capacity to provide greater detail at finer industry level. It is proposed to move to full implementation in respect of the 2008-09 reference year.

ABS is seeking advice from users of manufacturing and mining statistics on priorities, in terms of industries and/or data items to feed into development of the industry survey program. To assist that process, a short discussion paper is available upon request which outlines our current understanding of data gaps in relation to manufacturing and mining industries, some criteria for determining the future program, and show the range of outputs to be produced in respect of manufacturing and mining industries for 2006-07 and 2007-08. The discussion paper will also provide information on redevelopment of the industry survey program.

Within available ABS resources, we want to ensure that we provide broad industry performance information across all industries in the economy, and at the same time remain responsive to legitimate needs for more detailed information. In that context, it is important that inclusion of an industry in the program is justified, particularly in terms of policy imperatives.

User consultations will be held on Tuesday 30 October at 485 LaTrobe Street, Melbourne. If you have an interest in attending the seminar, obtaining the discussion paper or require further information please contact Maxine McDermott on (03) 9615 7080.

Review of Australian Standard Geographical Classification, 2007

This information paper (cat. no. 1216.0.55.001, released 16/08/2007) gives background to the Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) review and outlines a proposal to replace the current ASGC. The review's aim is to create a new Australian statistical geography that better meets the contemporary needs of users and addresses some of the ASGC's shortcomings. Since 1997, there have been several developments that impact on geographic coding. These include development of Geocoded National Address File (G-NAF), improvements in geographic information system (GIS) technology, and greater ability through the use of Intelligent Character Recognition and Automatic Coding to capture and cost-effectively code large volumes of addresses.

In late 2006, ABS convened the ASGC Review Committee, a panel of internal and external experts to guide the review and generate ideas that could be taken to consultation. In early 2007, there was a round of consultation with key ABS stakeholders. This was followed by a later round of consultation with external stakeholders, including presentations and visits to all States and Territories. This information paper is a product of these consultations and the committee's advice and suggestions. Formal written submissions in relation to the paper closed on 5 October 2007, with another round of consultations to commence in 2008.

For further information contact Alec Bamber on (02) 6252 6365 or email <geography@abs.gov.au>.

Gross State Product using production approach

The information paper 'Gross State Product Using The Production Approach GSP(P)' (cat no 5220.0.55.002) was released 14/09/2007, and is available on the ABS website <https://www.abs.gov.au>. The ABS's State Accounts team has been working on a project to develop volume estimates of Gross State Product using a production approach for the last three years. This information paper provides results of the project. GSP(P) results for each state are presented, followed by a discussion on gross value added (GVA) by industry (ANZSIC93), ownership of dwellings and taxes less subsidies on products for each state.


A Directory of Education and Training Statistics (cat. no. 1136.0) Released 09/07/2007

Check this directory to find data sources, data items and publications available in relation to education and training. It includes information about education cost and expenditure, childcare and preschool education, primary and secondary school education, vocational education and training, higher education, indigenous education and training, other statistical or research reports, and classifications and manuals for Australian education and training statistics.

Research Paper: Data Visualisation, Jul 2007 (cat. no. 1211.0.55.001) Released 19/07/2007. First Issue.

This research paper analyses existing data visualisation tools and techniques. It seeks to highlight these examples in a practical context, incorporating issues of statistical storytelling and benefits for displaying statistical data.

Measures of Australia's Progress: Summary Indicators, 2007 (Edition 2) (cat. no. 1383.0.55.001) Released 23/08/2007

Presents a summary of 14 headline dimensions of social, economic and environmental progress. The indicators are at national level, and a brief summary discussion about the measure and associated trends occurs. Updates occur for: economic hardship; biodiversity (land clearing section); atmosphere (greenhouse gas emissions); and family, community and social cohesion (voluntary work section).

Regional Population Growth, Australia, 1996 to 2006 (cat. no. 3218.0) Released 24/07/2007

At June 2006, Australia's estimated resident population (ERP) was 20.7 million people, an increase of 1.3 million people (6.6%) since 2001, with an average annual growth rate of 1.3%. In the five years to June 2006, Queensland experienced the largest growth (462,600 people; 12.7%), followed by Victoria (323,600; 6.7%) and New South Wales (242,000; 3.7%).

In 2006, capital city Statistical Divisions (SDs) were home to over 13.2 million people, or 64% of Australia's population. In the five years to June 2006, Melbourne SD (up 272,700 people) recorded the largest capital city growth, followed by Brisbane SD (191,300), Sydney SD (156,100) and Perth SD (126,500). The largest five year state balance growth occurred in balance of Queensland (up 271,300 people), followed by balance of New South Wales (85,900), and balance of Victoria (50,800).

The population of Melbourne (C) - Southbank-Docklands SLA more than tripled in five years, growing by 9,700 people at an average 25.8% each year. Melbourne (C) - Inner SLA (covering the CBD) increased by 6,200 people at an average annual 14.3%. These two SLAs reflect continued growth in inner city apartment living.

During these five years, large growth was recorded in the Melbourne LGAs of Casey (C) (up 40,700 people), Wyndham (C) (28,900) and Melton (S) (28,100). Melbourne (C) increased by 8.6% on average each year. The coastal LGA of Greater Geelong (C) increased by 11,500 people over five years (or 1.2% per year), making it the largest growth LGA outside Melbourne SD. Many inland Victorian LGAs also experienced strong growth, including: Greater Bendigo (C), Ballarat (C), Mitchell (S) and Macedon Ranges (S).

Population by Age and Sex, Australia, 2006 (cat. no. 3235.0) Released 24/07/2007. First Issue

At 30 June 2006, the ERP of Victoria was 5.13 million, an increase of 323,600 people in five years (average annual growth 1.3%); with 73% (3.74 mil) residing in Melbourne Statistical Division (MSD). In the five years to 2006, Victoria's median age for persons increased from 35.8 to 36.7 years. In 2006, the median age for males was 35.9 years and for females 37.5 years. Melbourne SD (35.9 years) recorded the lowest median age for Victorian SDs; while in regional Victoria it was 39.4 years, with the highest occurring in East Gippsland (42.7 years), Wimmera (42.3) and Gippsland SDs (40.1).

The the highest median age local government area (LGA) was Queenscliffe (B) (52.3 years), followed by Strathbogie (S) (47.3), Bass Coast (S) (46.0), and Yarriambiack (S) (45.7). The lowest median age LGA was Melbourne (C) (28.0 years), followed by Melton (S) (31.1), Wyndham (C) (32.4), Hume (C) (32.6) and Casey (C) (32.7).

Children (0-14 years) represented 19.0% of Victoria's population, and were prevalent in the fringe LGAs of Melbourne SD: Cardinia (S) (24.4%), Melton (S) (24.2%) and Casey (C) (24.1%). The lowest proportion of children was in Melbourne (C) (6.0%); followed by Port Philip (C) (9.7%), Yarra (C) (10.9%) and Stonnington (C) (13.0%).

Divorces, Australia, 2006 (cat. no. 3307.0.55.001) Released 30/08/2007

Victoria had 12,110 divorces granted in 2006, giving a crude divorce rate of 2.4 per 1,000 estimated resident population compared with 2.1 in NSW. Some 49.8% of Victorian divorces involved children. Wives (41.0%) were more likely to apply for divorce than husbands (30.7%), with joint applications (28.2%) common. Nationally, the crude divorce rate has fallen from 2.9 per 1,000 ERP in 1996 and 2001, to 2.5 in 2006.

The median age of a Victorian wife at marriage was 25.0 years, at separation 37.3 years, and at divorce 40.8 years. The median duration of marriage to separation for persons in Victoria was 8.8 years, and to divorce 12.5 years. The Victorian female divorce rate was fairly low for 25-29 year olds (6.5%), increasing with age: 30-34 years (10.8%), 35-39 years (11.3%) and 40-44 years (11.2%); then dropping for 45-49 years (9.6%), 50-54 years (7.3%), etc.

Guide to Migrant Statistical Sources, 2007 (cat. no. 3414.0) Released 07/08/2007. First Issue

Search by topic to find key data sources for both ABS and non-ABS statistics. This guide brings together summaries of all Australian statistical collections relating to migrants and ethnicity, and includes government, academic and private sources. If you are aware of other migrant related data that may be of interest, let our Migrant Statistics Unit know by sending an email to <migrant.statistics.unit@abs.gov.au>

Australian Social Trends, 2007 (cat. no. 4102.0) Released on 07/08/2007

Using ABS and other official statistics, 'Australian Social Trends' describes aspects of society and how they change over time. Chapters include: population, family and community, health, education and training, work, economic resources and housing, environment, and international comparisons. Summary tables and graphs in each chapter show changes that have taken place at national level over a decade, with differences across states/territories for the most recent year. Data cubes at both national and state/territory level are also available.

Around 7.4 million Australian adults (54%) were overweight or obese in 2005, an increase of 2 million adults since 1995. In 2005, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people were over three times as likely as non-Indigenous people to have diabetes, and more than ten times as likely to have kidney disease.

Goods and services generally became more affordable between 1986 and 2006. Per person increases in household disposable income (up 5.1% per year between 1986 and 2006) and household net worth (up 6.6% per year between 1989 and 2006) increased faster than all groups consumer price inflation (3.7% per year between 1986 and 2006). While many goods and services have become more affordable, including: motor vehicles, clothing and footwear, and household appliances; others, such as education, hospital and medical services have become less affordable.

As household income increased so has spending. Since 1986, real (i.e. adjusted for inflation) household consumption expenditure per person has increased on average by 2% each year ($17,500 in 1986 to $26,100 in 2006). The largest increases were on communication services and goods for recreation and culture.

Between 2002-03 and 2004-05 in Victoria, total solid waste generation rose from about 1.8 to 2.0 tonnes per person in Victoria, for an average annual increase of 6% over two years. Despite the increase in amount of solid waste being generated, the overall trend is towards reduced landfilling and increased recycling of waste. An estimated 19% less solid waste was buried as landfill in Australia (excluding Tasmania and the Northern Territory) during 2002-03 (17 million tonnes) than during 1996-97 (21 million tonnes). This was accompanied by a strong increase in the amount of solid waste recycled, from an estimated 80 kilograms per Australian during 1996-97 to 759 kilograms per person during 2002-03.

Sports and Physical Recreation: A Statistical Overview, Australia, 2007 Edition 1 (cat. no. 4156.0) Released 20/08/2007

Data from a range of sources, presented mainly at Australia level. Information about the number of people who play sports; most popular sports; number of people attending sporting events; spending on sports and physical recreation; economic activity of businesses, clubs and associations; employees in sports and physical recreation occupations or industries; and levels of support provided by volunteers, sponsorship and government funding.

There were 9.1 million persons aged 18 years and over (62.4% of adult population) in Australia who participated in physical activities for recreation, exercise or sport during the 12 months prior to interview in 2002. Slightly more than half (4.6 million) participated in organised sports and physical recreation. The most popular physical recreation activity for both males and females was walking for exercise, with females (32.9%) outdoing males (17.5%). There were 1.6 million children aged 5-14 years (61.6% of this cohort) participating in organised sport outside school hours during the 12 months ending April 2003. The most popular organised sport for boys was outdoor soccer (301,100 participants, 22.2% of population), whereas for girls it was netball (233,000 participants, 18.1%).

At end June 2005, 111,519 persons worked for organisations mainly engaged in providing sports and physical recreation services. Building work worth $585.5m was approved for sports and physical recreation buildings during 2005-06, with 58.1% for construction of new buildings; and engineering construction work worth $1,711.0m done for recreation projects (including landscaping).

Voluntary Work, Australia, 2006 (cat. no. 4441.0) Released 20/07/2007

The Voluntary Work Survey was conducted from March to July 2006. It presents data on rates of participation in voluntary work, hours contributed, characteristics of people who volunteer, types of organisations they work for and activities they undertake. In Australia during 2006, 5.2 million people (34% of pop 18+) participated in voluntary work. They contributed 713 million hours to different activities, and in organisations and groups with a diverse range of interests. Overall, 32% of men and 36% of women were volunteers. In Melbourne 30% participated in voluntary work, while in the rest of Victoria 41% participated.

People aged 35-44 years (43%) were most likely to volunteer, and include a large number of parents with dependent children, reflecting commitments associated with their children, such as work for schools and sports teams. Female partners with dependent children had a volunteer rate of 50% compared with 32% for female partners without dependent children. Employed people, either in full-time (34%) or part-time (44%), had a higher volunteer rate than unemployed (26%) or not in the labour force (30%). Men employed full-time (34%) were as likely to volunteer as women employed full-time (33%). Almost two-thirds of volunteers (62%) worked for one organisation only, 25% for two, 8% for three and 4% for more than three organisations.

Graph: Volunteer rate: type of organisation

Most organisations for which people had volunteering involvements were non-profit (84%), with 14% in the government sector. Activities most frequently reported by volunteers were fundraising (48% of their involvements), preparing and serving food (31%), teaching/providing information (28%), administration (26%) and management (23%).

Water Use on Australian Farms, 2005-06 (cat. no. 4618.0) Released 14/08/2007

Preliminary estimates of agricultural water use, pastures and crops irrigated, and sources of water used for agriculture at a national and state/territory level; compiled from data collected as part of the Agricultural Census for year ended 30 June 2006. Estimates of irrigation water use for Australia and states/territories during 2002-03, 2003-04 and 2004-05 are included. Final estimates at the national, state/territory and regional level will be released in March 2008. Climatic conditions affect both the availability of water for irrigation and the need to irrigate. Information from the Bureau of Meteorology outlining climatic conditions across Australia between July 2005 and June 2006 is presented.

For Australia in 2005-06, the major crop by volume of irrigation water applied remained pasture for grazing (2,871 gigalitres, average application rate 3.5 ML/ha), followed by cotton (1,746 GL, 6.3 ML/ha), rice (1,230 GL, 12.3 ML/ha) and sugar cane (1,104 GL, 5.0 ML/ha). Pasture for grazing accounted for 26.5% of all irrigation water use nationally, followed by cotton (16.1%), rice (11.3%) and sugar cane (10.2%).

In Victoria during 2005-06, irrigation accounted for 91.9% of agricultural water use. In Victoria, agricultural establishments used a total of 2,688 GL of water, with 2,471 GL for irrigation. Victoria had 25.8% of the nation's irrigating establishments, with 657,000 hectares of irrigated agricultural land. Pasture for grazing remained the major use of irrigation water in Victoria, consuming 63.4% of Victorian total.

Across most of Australia, surface water remained the major source of water for agricultural purposes, totalling 9,074 gigalitres or 76.2% of all water used for agricultural purposes. Groundwater accounted for 47.3% of water used for agricultural purposes in South Australia, and 69.5% in Northern Territory. Across Australia, groundwater totalled 2,524 gigalitres or 21.2% of all water used for agricultural purposes. Recycled or re-used water from off-farm sources was less than 1% of water used by agriculture.

Household Income and Income Distribution, Australia, 2005-06 (cat. no. 6523.0) Released 02/08/2007

Results from the 2005-06 Survey of Income and Housing provide estimates of income, net worth and other characteristics of households and persons living in private dwellings. The real income of high income people rose by 36% over the 11 years to 2005-06; compared with a rise of 31% for low income earners and 32% for middle income earners. Mean incomes in capital cities were 16% above those outside capital cities. Mean incomes in Victoria were 1% below the national average and mean incomes in Melbourne 3% below the capital city average. In 2005-06, the wealthiest 20% of households accounted for 61% of total household net worth, with average net worth of $1.7 million per household; in comparison, the poorest 20% of households accounted for 1% of total household net worth and had an average net worth of $27,000 per household. For households with middle and high income, wages and salaries were the principal source of income, while for low income households government pensions and allowances were the principal source.

Additional tables, including more detailed dissections and additional classifications, are also available in cat no 6523.0.55.001. More detailed data on wealth and housing will be published later this year in 'Household Wealth and Wealth Distribution, Australia, 2005-06' (cat. no. 6554.0) and 'Housing Occupancy and Costs, Australia, 2005-06' (cat. no. 4130.55.001).

Government Benefits, Taxes and Household Income, Australia, 2003-04 (cat. no. 6537.0) Released 13/6/2007

An ABS study on the effects of government benefits and taxes on income distribution among private households in 2003-04. It uses Household Expenditure Survey data in conjunction with other data, such as government finance statistics, to calculate the effects of government benefits and taxes on household income at the Australia level.

Some 27% of government benefits, both in cash and in kind, were allocated to the 20% of people low income group. This low income group received 36% of government benefits in cash, whereas people in the high income group (top 20%) received 4% of the cash benefits. Indirect benefits (provided in kind) through government services in health, education, housing, social security and welfare were more evenly distributed, with 22% of benefits received by people in the low income group and 16% received by the high income group. People in the low income group paid 5% of all personal income taxes, and 17% of total taxes on production (such as GST) attributable to individual households. The high income group paid 54% of personal income taxes and 26% of the allocated taxes on production.

Selected Agricultural Commodities, Australia, Preliminary, 2005-06 (cat. no. 7112.0) Released 26/07/2007

Estimates for main agricultural commodities and livestock numbers collected in the 2005-06 Agricultural Census, and final estimates from related collections (i.e. apple, pear and vineyard collections). Victoria level data is presented.

Retail and Wholesale Industries, Australia, 2005-06 (cat. no. 8622.0) Released 17/08/2007

Australia's retailers generated $292.3 billion income and employed 1,230,000 people, with 31% of employment in food retailing. Wholesalers generated $354.2 billion and employed 509,000 people. Retail and wholesale industries contributed almost 11% to the nation's economy. The 157,000 retailers reported an operating profit before tax of $13 billion (or $83,300 per business), representing an operating profit margin of 4.5%.

The retail industry was predominantly small businesses, with most (96%) owner-operated or employing fewer than 20 people. These businesses generated 34% of retail income and an operating profit before tax of $5.7 billion. In contrast, just over 600 businesses employing 100 or more people and accounted for only 0.4% of all retail businesses in Australia, and generated nearly 45% of all income. Operating profit before tax for these businesses was $5.3 billion.

Food retailing (20%) accounted for the largest proportion of all retail commodities sold nationally in 2005-06, followed by transport equipment (14%), and petroleum, gas and coal (12%). Clothing made up 9% of all retail sales. Products with the highest margins on sales were clothing (47%) and textiles (43%); while the lowest margins were in petroleum, gas and coal (6%) and transport equipment (10%). NSW accounted for 32% of retail industry employment and generated a third (32.8%) of total sales of goods and services. Victorian retailers comprised just above a quarter of all employment (25.9%) and total sales of goods and services (25.5%).

Australia's 84,900 wholesalers had an operating profit before tax of $16.3 billion (or $192,300 per business). See also 'Retail and Wholesale Industries, Australia: Commodities, 2005-06' (cat no. 8624.0, released 17/08/2007).

National Localities Index, Australia, July 2007, Final (cat. no. 1252.0.55.001) Released 20/07/2007.

The National Localities Index (NLI) provides Statistical Local Area (SLA) codes for over 32,000 Australian localities. The NLI will not be available beyond Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) 2007. The final edition NLI was released in July 2007, and will remain current until 30 June, 2008.

Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) Digital Boundaries (Intercensal), Australia, 2007 (cat. no. 1259.0.30.001) Released 17/07/2007

This product contains digital boundaries current for ASGC Edition 2007 (date of effect 1 July 2007). In MapInfo Interchange Format and based on datum GDA94.

Research Paper: Methodology for Synthesising Estimates of Indigenous Child Health, Aug 2007 (cat. no. 1351.0.55.021) Released 30/08/2007. First Issue

This project explored the feasibility of deriving estimates of Indigenous child health for Queensland and the Northern Territory using data from the Western Australian Aboriginal Child Health Survey, 2000-01 (WAACHS) and other national datasets, such as the Census of Population and Housing. This paper outlines the technique for creating synthetic estimates. ABS did not create synthetic estimates for Queensland and Northern Territory. However, the methodology documented should be useful to researchers undertaking a similar exercise.

Research Paper: Assessing the Quality of Modelled Estimates (Methodology Advisory Committee), Jun 2006 (cat. no. 1352.0.55.078) Released 06/09/2007. First Issue

In recent years, official statistical agencies have increasingly used analytical methods to compile statistics. Modelling techniques have enabled statisticians to meet the demand for statistics that otherwise would be too costly or difficult to produce. This paper proposes a framework to assess the quality of statistics generated using econometric models. We applied the framework to a recent project to estimate business employee numbers based on the Economic Activity Survey and Business Income Tax data.

Research Paper: Socio-Economic Indexes for Individuals and Families (Methodology Advisory Committee), June 2007 (cat. no. 1352.0.55.086) Released 23/08/2007. First Issue

SEIFA indexes are widely used measures of relative socio-economic status at a small area level. The indexes rank and identify areas that are relatively more, or less, disadvantaged. When we make judgments about individuals based on characteristics of the area in which they live, there is potential for error in our conclusions, referred to as ecological fallacy. These findings indicate a high risk of ecological fallacy when SEIFA is used as a proxy for the socio-economic status of smaller groups within an area.

Statistical Geography: Volume 2, Census Geographic Areas, Australia, 2006 (cat. no. 2905.0) Released 17/07/2007

The primary geographical classification used by ABS to disseminate statistical data for 2006 Census of Population and Housing is the Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) 2006. Included geographic areas outside the ASGC's scope: Commonwealth and State Electoral Divisions, Postal Areas, State Suburbs, Place of Work Areas and Australian Indigenous Geographical Classification (AIGC). For digital mapping capacity, refer to 'Census of Population and Housing: Census Geographic Areas Digital Boundaries, Australia, 2006' (cat. no. 2923.0.30.001).

ABS Postal Area Concordances, Aug 2006 (cat. no. 2905.0.55.001) Released 02/07/2007. First Issue

This product contains seven separate concordance files, which are comma delimited and include a metadata sheet showing the file format. The '2006 Postal Area from 2006 SLA Concordance' allows the conversion of data from ASGC Edition 2006 Statistical Local Areas (SLAs) to 2006 Postal Areas. This population weighted concordance can be used to translate statistics aggregated by SLA to POA aggregations. See the website listing for six other concordance descriptions.

Forward Work Program, 2007-08 to 2009-10 (cat. no. 1006.0) Released 22/08/2007

Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) Urban Centres and Localities (UC/L) Digital Boundaries, Australia, 2006 (cat. no. 1259.0.30.003) Released 21/08/2007

Research Paper: Explorations of Innovation and Business Performance Using Linked Firm-Level Data, Sep 2007 (cat. no. 1351.0.55.020) Released 07/09/2007. First Issue

Statistical Geography: Volume 3, Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) Urban Centres/Localities, 2006 (cat. no. 2909.0) Released 21/08/2007

2006 Census Non-Response Rates Fact Sheets, 2006 (cat. no. 2914.0.55.001) Released 09/07/2007. First Issue

2006 Census of Population and Housing: Media Releases and Fact Sheets, 2006 (cat. no. 2914.0.55.002) Released 27/06/2007. First Issue

ABS Directions in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Statistics, Jun 2007 (cat. no. 4700.0) Released 08/06/2007

Population Distribution, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, 2006 (cat. no. 4705.0) Released 15/08/2007

Community Housing and Infrastructure Needs Survey, Australia, Data Dictionary, 2006 (Reissue). (cat. no. 4710.0.55.001) Released 23/08/2007

Tobacco Smoking, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people: A snapshot, 2004-05 (cat. no. 4722.0.55.004) Released 05/07/2007. First Issue

Australian National Accounts: National Income, Expenditure and Product, Jun 2007 (cat. no. 5206.0) Released 04/09/2007

Information Paper: Quality Dimensions of the Australian National Accounts, 2007 (cat. no. 5216.0.55.002) Released 31/08/2007. First Issue

Information paper: Experimental Estimates of Industry Multifactor Productivity, 2007 (cat. no. 5260.0.55.001) Released 07/09/2007. First Issue

Labour Force, Australia: Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Families, Electronic Delivery, June 2007 (cat. no. 6224.0.55.001) Released 19/07/2007

Labour Force Characteristics of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, Experimental Estimates from the Labour Force Survey, 2006 (cat. no. 6287.0) Released 28/06/2007

Analytical Living Cost Indexes for Selected Australian Household Types, Jun 2007 (cat. no. 6463.0) Released 29/08/2007

Household Expenditure Survey and Survey of Income and Housing, Confidentialised Unit Record Files, 2003-04 (Second edition). (cat. no. 6540.0) Released 02/08/2007

Information Paper: Introduction of revised international standards in ABS economic statistics in 2009 (cat. no. 5310.0.55.001) Released 06/09/2007. First Issue

Value of Selected Agricultural Commodities Produced, Australia, Preliminary, 2005-06 (cat. no. 7502.0) Released 06/09/2007

Research and Experimental Development, Businesses, Australia, 2005-06 (cat. no. 8104.0) Released 21/08/2007

Manufacturing Indicators, Australia, Mar 2007 (cat. no. 8229.0) Released 24/08/2007

Mining Indicators, Australia, Mar 2007 (cat. no. 8417.0) Released 24/08/2007

Tourism Newsletter, Aug 2007 (cat. no. 8602.0) Released 03/09/2007. First Issue

Tourism Region Maps and Concordance Files, Australia, 2006 (cat. no. 9503.0.55.001) Released 29/06/2007

Main Economic Indicators (MEIs) Also released during the past quarter were a number of monthly and quarterly MEIs which can be accessed from the ABS website home page <https://www.abs.gov.au>. Examples of MEIs include: housing finance, building approvals, labour force, consumer price index, sales of new motor vehicles, and retail trade.

Free ABS publications online. All ABS electronic publications from 1998 onwards are available free from <https://www.abs.gov.au>.


What statistical training courses are available at ABS Victoria?

Basic Statistical Analysis (BSA)
Turning Data Into Information (TDII)
Making Quality Informed Decisions (MQID)
Basic Survey Design (BSD)

In Victoria we present BSA, TDII, MQID and BSD twice yearly and schedule other courses on an adhoc needs basis. There has been a very positive response to the 2007 program and we are currently compiling the 2008 schedule for release shortly.

For further information go to the ABS website <https://www.abs.gov.au>. Select 'Services We Provide' then 'ABS Training' or contact Maxine McDermott on (03) 9615 7080 or <victoria.statistics@abs.gov.au>

Training Program - October to December, 2007

Basic Survey Design - 21 & 22 November

This course aims to provide a broad overview of all facets of survey development. Topics include developing survey objectives, advantages and disadvantages of various collection methodologies, questionnaire design, data processing, reporting of results and management of the design process.

2011 Census - your chance to have a say

While continuing to deliver more new products and services from the 2006 Census, ABS is turning its attention to the next Census of Population and Housing to be held in August 2011. ABS will soon invite public comment on content and procedures of the next Census. The invitation to have a say in the way the nation’s largest statistical collection is undertaken is in 'Information Paper: 2011 Census of Population and Housing: ABS Views on Content and Procedures' (cat. no 2007.0) to be released on 26 October 2007.

This is the first in a series of information papers about the 2011 Census. It marks the first step in the public consultation process and outlines ABS proposals for the next Census, including:
  • procedures for conducting the Census
  • arrangements to protect the privacy of individuals
  • measures to ensure the confidentiality of information collected
  • topics to be included
  • topics under review, including new topic proposals
  • topics to be excluded.

Submissions can be lodged either online, electronically by email or in hardcopy. The submission period will open on 26 October 2007 when the Information Paper is released and will close on 31 March 2008. Users of Census data and interested members of the public are invited to make submissions on any aspect of the Census. The Information Paper and Submission Form will be available on the ABS website (for free download) at <https://www.abs.gov.au/2011 census views> from 26 October 2007. Information and guidelines about making a submission will also be available from the website.

Information Sessions on 2006 Census products and 2011 Census Topic Consultation are planned for each capital city during October and November 2007. The details of the Melbourne session are listed below. These meetings are open to all interested members of the public and provide an opportunity to hear more about plans for the next Census, meet ABS staff and ask questions.

Monday 26 November
9.30am or 2.00pm
Treasury Theatre, Lower Plaza, 1 Macarthur Street, East Melbourne

Tuesday 27 November
ABS Offices, 485 LaTrobe Street, Melbourne

To register your interest in attending one of these sessions email Maxine McDermott at <victoria.statistics@abs.gov.au> (indicating your preferred session in the subject field).

What happens next? Following assessment of submissions and consultation meetings, recommendations on content and procedures of the 2011 Census will be discussed with the Australian Statistics Advisory Council later in 2008. ABS will then prepare a submission to Federal Government during 2009. A final decision on 2011 Census topics is expected to be made by the Federal Government in late 2009. Subsequently, ABS will release an information paper outlining the final nature and content of the 2011 Census. All individuals or organisations who have made submissions will be advised of the final outcomes.

Victorian Statistics Advisory Forum (VSAF)
VSAF is a major forum for statistical liaison between Victorian Government Agencies and ABS. The following group of departmental representatives meet 3 times each year.

Departmental Representatives
VSAF Chair
Department of Treasury and Finance
Vin Martin

Department of Treasury and Finance
Peter Fuhrmann

Department of Premier and Cabinet
Jane Brockington

Department of Innovation, Industry and Regional Development
Chris West

Department of Education and Early Childhood Development
Dr Sara Glover

Department of Human Services
Dr Connie Spinoso

Department of Justice
John Lang

Department of Infrastructure
Philip Norman

Department of Planning and Community Development
To be advised

Department of Sustainability and Environment
Elizabeth Thomas

Department of Primary Industries
Bill Fisher

ABS Victoria
Dina Neiger (a/g)

Contact points for ABS in Victoria

1900 986 400 ($0.77 per minute)

National Information and Referral Service
1300 135 070
email <client.services@abs.gov.au>

Postal address
GPO Box 2796Y
Melbourne Vic 3001

ABS website

Regional Director
ABS Victoria
Dina Neiger (a/g)
(03) 9615 7330
email <victoria.statistics@abs.gov.au>.

Statistical Coordination Branch
Marie Apostolou
(03) 9615 7500
email <victoria.statistics@abs.gov.au>.

Assistant Director - Victorian Government Servicing
Antonella Caruso
(03) 9615 7860
email <victoria.statistics@abs.gov.au>.

Assistant Director - Economic & Regional Statistics
Pam Boulton
(03) 9615 7080
email <victoria.statistics@abs.gov.au>.

Assistant Director - Social Statistics
Fiona Shalley
(03) 9615 7510
email <victoria.statistics@abs.gov.au>.

Statistics Victoria Editor
Alan Page
(03) 9615 7899
email <victoria.statistics@abs.gov.au>.

Spread the news electronically
Copies of Statistics Victoria are available free for electronic dissemination. There are two ways to access an electronic copy of the newsletter:
  1. Subscribe to this newsletter by contacting Alan Page on (03) 9615 7899 or email <victoria.statistics@abs.gov.au>. ABS encourages further dissemination of this newsletter through email, or by its placement on your organisation's intranet.
  2. Go to the ABS website <https://www.abs.gov.au>. Select 'Access all products and statistics' > 'By catalogue number' > cat no 1100.2 (Statistics Victoria newsletter).