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AUSTRALIA The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population is projected to increase across all age groups between 2011 and 2026. The number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children (014 years) is projected to increase from 240,600 in 2011 to between 285,200 and 315,200 in 2026. This equates to an increase of between 19% and 31% over the period. The number of young adults (1524 years) increases by a smaller proportion (21%), from 133,900 people to between 161,700 and 161,800 people in 2026. The number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 2554 years is projected to increase from 235,900 in 2011 to between 336,100 and 337,800 in 2026. This equates to an increase of between 42% and 43% over the period. The number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 55 years and over is projected to more than double over the period, from 59,400 in 2011 to between 124,900 and 130,800 in 2026.
Population structure The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population has a relatively young age structure. Between 2001 and 2011 the median age of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population is estimated to have increased from 20.4 to 21.6 years, and is projected to increase to between 24.7 and 25.4 years in 2026. The proportion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children aged 014 years decreased from 40% in 2001 to 36% in 2011, and is projected to decrease to between 31% and 33% in 2026. The proportion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 65 years and over increased slightly from 2.9% in 2001 to 3.4% in 2011 and is projected to increase to between 6.3% and 6.5% in 2026. The proportion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 1564 years is projected to remain relatively stable, from 61% in 2011 to between 60% and 62% in 2026. 3.3 ESTIMATED AND PROJECTED ABORIGINAL AND TORRES STRAIT ISLANDER POPULATION, by age group, Australia  Series B  at 30 June Natural increase At the national level, any growth in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population is entirely due to natural increase (that is, the excess of births over deaths), as net overseas migration is assumed to be zero. Although decreasing fertility rates are assumed, the number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander births is projected to increase over the projection period. This is due to the age structure of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population, which has large numbers of people moving into peak childbearing ages over the projection period, as well as due to the assumption of increasing paternity rates. As a result, the number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander births is projected to increase from 16,800 in 2012, to between 21,000 and 25,400 in 2026. As the population grows and ages, the number of deaths of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people is projected to increase from approximately 2,700 in 2012, to between 3,000 and 4,100 in 2026. As the number of births is considerably larger than the number of deaths, and is projected to continue to be so, natural increase remains consistently high, reaching between 17,000 and 22,400 people in 2026. 3.4 PROJECTED NATURAL INCREASE OF ABORIGINAL AND TORRES STRAIT ISLANDER POPULATION, Australia  20122026
