1304.5 - Stats Talk WA, Sep 2008  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 24/09/2008   
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Statistical News
Developments in ABS Statistics

Population Projections
Australia’s population is set to change substantially over the next 50 years, with around one in four Australians being 65 years or older by 2056, according to the latest population projections released by the ABS on 4 September 2008. These projections are based on a series of assumptions that take into account recent trends in fertility, mortality and migration.

By 2056 Australia’s population is projected to increase to between 31 and 43 million people, with around 23% to 25% being 65 years or older. In 2007 Australia’s population was 21 million people, with 13% being 65 years or older.

Using the Series B assumptions WA’s population is projected to more than double over the same period, from 2.1 million people in 2007 to 4.3 million people in 2056. Further information is available in Population Projections, Australia, 2006–2101 (cat. no. 3222.0).

Updated Regional Profiles
On 28 July 2008, the ABS updated regional information for all Australian states and territories with the release of profiles for regions such as Local Government Areas.

There are profiles for over 2,000 regions across Australia, covering a range of social and economic information for the years 2002 to 2006. The regional profiles now include additional information not available in previous releases, including the number of businesses by industry, agricultural commodities produced, the number and types of motor vehicles registered, and type of access to the internet.

To access the regional profiles, select the ‘National Regional Profile’ link under the Regional Statistics heading on the grey menu bar on the left of the ABS home page.

Australian Social Trends
On 23 July 2008, the ABS released Australian Social Trends 2008 (cat. no. 4102.0), which presents statistical analysis and commentary on a variety of current social issues. Each chapter is supported by a set of summary tables including key social indicators which provide an overview of social change over the past decade, including how social conditions differ across Australian states and territories, as well as international comparisons.

The following broad areas of interest are covered: population; family and community; health; education and training; work; economic resources; and housing, as well as a chapter of articles covering other areas of social concern (including an article on Towns of the Mineral Boom).

Perspectives on Migrants
Perspectives on Migrants (cat. no. 3416.0), predominantly utilises data from the 2006 Census of Population and Housing. The publication was released on 20 August 2008 and includes three articles focussing on people born in China and India, people born in Africa and people born in the Middle East.

The articles examine areas of interest such as net overseas migration, year of arrival, visa category, income, labour force status, age and sex, education, ancestry, religious affiliation and English proficiency.

Homelessness in Australia
On Census night in 2006, the homeless population in Australia was 105,000, according to an academic report released by the ABS on 4 September 2008. Counting the Homeless, 2006 (cat. no. 2050.0) found that absolute homelessness, such as sleeping out or in an improvised shelter, accounted for 16% of homelessness in Australia.

In 2006, more than two-thirds (67%) of the homeless population were adults over 18 years of age, with 12% under 12 years of age, and 21% from 12 to 18 years old. Less than half (44%) of homeless people were female.