6250.0 - Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Migrants, Australia, November 1996  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 11/06/1997   
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June 11, 1997
Embargoed: 11:30 AM (AEST)
Migrants have higher unemployment rate

In November last year the unemployment rate for migrants who had arrived, as adults, in Australia after 1970, and had obtained permanent resident status, was 9.7 per cent.

This compared with 7.7 per cent for those born in Australia, and 9.2 per cent for all migrants to Australia, according to figures published today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics in the publication Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Migrants.

The publication presents the labour force profile of 1,449,900 migrants (i.e. those who arrived as adults after 1970) who made up 10 per cent of the civilian population aged 15 years and over in November 1996. It needs to be cautioned that these migrants represented 38 per cent of all migrants to Australia.

Following are further selected labour force characteristics of this group of migrants:
  • The unemployment rates for male and female migrants were 9.1 per cent and 10.5 per cent respectively.
  • The labour force participation rate for migrants was 68.0 per cent, compared with 58.0 per cent for all persons born outside Australia and 65.1 per cent for persons born in Australia. The participation rates for male and female migrants were 81.2 per cent and 55.4 per cent respectively.
  • Almost three quarters (71 per cent) of migrants who were employed in November 1996 had a job before they migrated. Of this group, 46 per cent remained in the same occupation.
  • The most common occupations for employed migrants were: professionals (19 per cent), tradespersons and related workers (16 per cent), intermediate clerical, sales and service workers (14 per cent), and intermediate production and transport workers (12 per cent).
  • The proportion of migrants who had arrived in Australia with post-school qualifications was 49 per cent. The majority (55 per cent) of these migrants had those qualifications recognised in Australia. Some 56 per cent of bachelor degrees were recognised, while 52 per cent of skilled and basic vocational qualifications were recognised.
  • Of 221,800 migrants who obtained post-school qualifications after arrival, 44 per cent obtained a skilled or basic vocational qualification and 30 per cent obtained a bachelor degree or higher.

Copies of the publication Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Migrants, Australia, November 1996 (cat. no. 6250.0) are available from ABS Bookshops.