3412.0 - Migration, Australia, 2008-09 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 29/07/2010   
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Contents >> Interstate Migration >> Age structure of interstate migrants

Age structure of interstate migrants

The population pyramid in Figure 6.7 shows the age and sex structure of both interstate migrants and Australia as a proportion of their respective populations. The age structure of interstate migrants was younger than that of Australia's overall population, with young adults being the most mobile.

Young adults

In 2008-09, persons aged 20-34 years made up 39% of all interstate movers (compared with 21% of the total population). Of the total Australian population of this age, 3% made an interstate move during the year.

Queensland was the major beneficiary of interstate migration in this age group, with a net gain of 5,000 persons. This represented 27% of the state's total population gain from NIM. Western Australia gained 3,900 persons which represented 81% of the state's NIM gain. The Northern Territory's gain in the 20-34 years age group (1,200 persons) exceeded the total gain for the territory (750 persons) indicating large compensating losses in many of the territory's other age groups, particularly at the ages below 15 years and above 54 years. Victoria recorded a small gain of 190 persons representing 27% of the overall gain for the state. The gain for the Australian Capital Territory was insignificant.

The remaining states recorded net losses in this age group, with the net loss for New South Wales being the largest (7,100 persons; 36% of the state's overall loss from NIM), followed by South Australia (2,600 persons; 55%). While Tasmania recorded an overall gain from NIM (670 persons), just over that number (680 persons) was lost from the 20-34 years age group. This indicates that while the 20-34 year olds may be leaving Tasmania, possibly for study or work opportunities, those in the younger and older ages are choosing to live in Tasmania, suggesting that families may be migrating to Tasmania.

6.7 Australia and interstate movers population structures(a), Age and sex - 2008-09

Older persons

Persons aged 50 years and over (52,400 persons) were less likely to move interstate than younger persons, accounting for 15% of the total number of interstate moves in 2008-09 (compared with 31% of the total population). Of the total Australian population in this age group, less than 1% made an interstate move during the year.

In 2008-09, Queensland recorded the highest net gain of movers aged 50 years and over with 2,100 persons, 11% of the state's total population gain from NIM. Tasmania, which gained 750 persons, and Victoria, which gained 460 persons, were the only other states or territories to record NIM gains in this age group.

New South Wales recorded the largest NIM loss of people aged 50 years and over in 2008-09 (1,300 persons; 7% of the state's overall loss). In this age group losses were also recorded by the Australian Capital Territory (810 persons), South Australia (430 persons), Western Australia (420 persons) and the Northern Territory (290 persons).

Persons aged 65 years and over (14,400 persons) accounted for 4% of all interstate movements in 2008-09 (compared with 13% of the total population). Victoria had the largest net gains from interstate movers in this age group (410 persons), followed by Queensland (320 persons) and Tasmania (140 persons).

New South Wales experienced a net interstate loss of 230 persons aged 65 years and over, followed by Western Australia (220 persons), South Australia (200 persons), the Northern Territory (110 persons) and the Australian Capital Territory (100 persons).

Median age of interstate migrants

In 2008-09, the median age of all interstate movers was 28.0 years. A high proportion of all interstate arrivals to the Australian Capital Territory (72%) and the Northern Territory (71%) were younger than 35 years of age. This high level of younger movers resulted in the two territories recording the lowest median ages of all interstate arrivals (26.8 years and 26.5 years respectively) as seen in Figure 6.8. Tasmania recorded the highest median age (31.1 years) for interstate arrivals. Arrivals to the remaining states had relatively similar median ages: South Australia (28.7), New South Wales (28.2), Victoria (28.1), Queensland (27.9) and Western Australia (27.8).

The median age at departure varied little between the states and territories: South Australia and Western Australia (28.5 years each), Victoria, Queensland and the Australian Capital Territory (28.1 each), New South Wales (27.8), the Northern Territory (27.5) and Tasmania (27.1).

6.8 Median age of interstate arrivals and departures - 2008-09(a)

The largest difference between the median ages of interstate arrivals and departures was for Tasmania, where the median age of arrivals was four years older than the median age of departures. This differential contributes to the faster aging of the Tasmanian population compared to other states and territories (for more information see Population by Age and Sex, Australian States and Territories, June 2009 (cat. no. 3201.0)).

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