1100.2 - Statistics Victoria (Newsletter), Sept 2005  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 11/10/2005   
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In this issue:

Victorian Community Indicators
Australian Social Trends Seminar
Safety, Crime and Justice: from data to policy
Mesh blocks - a new approach to statistical geography
State and Regional Indicators - tourist accommodation
Statpak Online
Catalogue of Publications and Products
Research Paper: Measured Income Inequality
Book Publishers
Book Retailers
Regional Australia: Sources of Income
Census - Proposed Products and Services
Australian Demographic Statistics
Cultural Funding by Government
Private Hospitals
Health and Welfare of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders
Balance of Payments - Supplementary Country Statistics
International Investment - Supplementary Country Statistics
Regional Wage and Salary Earner Statistics
Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Families
Household Income and Income Distribution
Household Expenditure Survey
Australian Farming in Brief
Agricultural State Profile, Victoria
Historical Selected Agriculture Commodities
Value of Agricultural Commodities Produced
Cafes and Restaurants
Accommodation Services
Survey of Motor Vehicle Use
Information Paper: Cause of Death Certification
Geographical Classification
Classification of Cultural and Ethnic Groups
National Localities Index
Classification of Languages
Multifactor Productivity for the Market-Sector Industries
Government Finance Statistics: Concepts, Sources and Methods
Other selected releases
Free ABS publications online
ABS statistical training
Points of contact

What's happening in Victoria

Full System of Community Indicators Taking Shape in Victoria

Victoria is moving towards a quite extensive system of community well-being indicators based around local government areas. This is the likely outcome of the Victorian Community Indicators Project (VCIP), now midway.

A project discussion paper 'Measuring wellbeing, engaging communities' has just been released. It focusses on key issues about community well-being and aims to stimulate debate further on the project's outcome. It also contains an illustrative framework of potential indicators and data sources. The VCIP is a major initiative funded by Vic Health. Key Victorian agencies, some non-government, the two peak municipal organisations and local governments are represented on the various VCIP bodies.

ABS has become closely involved with the project team and reference group, assisting in development of proposed indicators and organisation of reliable data. ABS is actively assisting in tapping local level data, with a particular focus on administrative sources, to support the project. This is likely to enhance the range of good quality statistical indicators and data for general use in Victoria. Attention is also being directed at data management and distribution systems needed to support the project. The ABS initiated National Data Network plan has been introduced to VCIP as strongly relevant to promoting the data exchange needed for community indicators.

The discussion paper notes that community well-being indicators are the various "key measures" which taken together, tell us about overall health and development of a community. They stand in some contrast to the idea of performance indicators, which measure whether a person or program achieves specific performance goals. Rather, well-being indicators focus on the condition of people and systems.

The illustrative framework has a number of domains: social, economic, built environment, natural environment, culture and leisure, democracy and citizenship. Each domain has connected themes. Quite a wide range of core and optional indicators has been drawn together for possible project use. These range from Satisfaction with economic development through Cost of a salad roll and soft drink to Obesity and Public and alternative transport usage.

The discussion paper's publication of an illustrated framework, potential indicators and data sources has already set off lively discussion amongst stakeholders about just which indicators are vital to a balanced understanding of the community's well-being. The debate, which will be conducted through on-going consultations over the next few months, will very likely refine the actual indicators that ease their way into operation.

More information on the project, including the full discussion report, visit <www.communityindicators.net au>. Feedback on the report can be made to VCIP Project Team (Joanne Pyke) at Institute for Community Engagement and Policy Alternatives, Victoria University on (03) 9919 5477 or email <joanne.pyke@vu.edu.au>.

ABS related enquiries about the project should be directed to Neil McLean on (03) 9615 7463 or <neil.mclean@abs.gov.au>, or Renee Schuster (03) 9615 7406 or <renee.schuster@abs.gov.au>.

Australian Social Trends Seminar 18 October 2005

Following on from previous years' highly popular Australian Social Trends seminars, ABS will conduct a Melbourne seminar on 18 October 2005. The seminar provides an overview of Australian society and how it is changing over time. The seminar will draw on key trends and issues highlighted in the 2005 edition of Australian Social Trends(cat. no. 4102.0).

Australian Social Trends has been designed to provide all Australians with an easily-understandable compendium of articles about topical social issues. The publication has a strong national focus, but it also includes state data for many current social issues. The seminar highlights issues in many areas of social concern, such as: population, family and community, health, education and training, work, economic resources and housing. Where possible, information about Victoria will be highlighted.

The seminar will be presented by Joanne Hillermann and Kate Bond. Joanne is the Director of Social Analysis and Reporting Section, and has 20 years experience in ABS covering a range of subject areas across the Population Statistics Group including family and community, living conditions and labour market statistics. Most recently as Director of Family and Community Statistics, Joanne was responsible for development and publication of the ABS social capital framework and a disability measure for the 2006 census. Kate Bond is Assistant Director in Social Analysis and Reporting Section and an editor of Australian Social Trends.

The seminar will last about one and a half hours with additional time for questions and discussion. Handouts will be available. Morning Tea will be available from 9:30am with the seminar commencing at 10:00am. The seminar cost is $80 per attendee.

For further details or to register, contact Heather Burns on Melbourne (03) 9615 7976, fax (03) 9615 7798, or email <heather.burns@abs.gov.au>.
Safety, Crime and Justice: from data to policy

The Australian Institute of Criminology (AIC) and ABS conducted a joint conference in June 2005 with the theme 'Safety, Crime and Justice: from data to policy'. Papers with a strong Victorian content included:
  • "Measuring road rage" by Russell G. Smith of the AIC, which drew much of its material from the Victorian Parliamentary report on "Violence associated with motor vehicle use".
  • "Reducing theft of and theft from motor vehicles: the Victoria Police experience" by Uma Rao and David Darragh of the Victoria Police.

Overall, thirty-six papers were presented at the conference. Papers are available on the AIC website <www.aic.gov.au/conferences/2005-abs>.

Contact Russell Cook on Melbourne (03) 9615 7585 or email <russell.cook@abs.gov.au>.
Mesh blocks - a new approach to statistical geography

To improve the utility of geographically referenced statistics, ABS is undertaking an ambitious work program to establish a new approach to statistical geography. This includes development of a new micro level of geography, the Mesh Block, and a comprehensive infrastructure for assigning a house, farm, factory or business to its correct Mesh Block based on its street address (using an address coder). While Mesh Blocks will not necessarily aggregate to Collection Districts (previously the smallest ABS geographic unit), they will form part of the Australian Standard Geographic Classification and aggregate to Statistical Local Area (SLA) level.

In creating 350,000 Mesh Blocks to cover all of Australia, ABS has been able to utilise advances in GIS technology and digital topographical data, in particular the Public Sector Mapping Agency's Geocoded National Address File (G-NAF). The design criteria adopted for Mesh Blocks have been found to be quite robust in that, despite the limitations of available spatial data on which they are based, they almost always result in micro regions which are very good, if not ideal, for most applications.

However, even the best national spatial databases cannot be completely authoritative and up-to-date, and some draft Mesh Blocks will have been based on features which no longer exist or not allowed for major new features. As part of the Mesh Block development process, ABS is seeking user feedback on the draft set of Mesh Blocks, to facilitate Mesh Block finalisation for the 2006 Census of Population and Housing.

To find out more about Mesh Block development, access draft Mesh Block boundaries and provide feedback; readers are referred to Information Paper: Draft Mesh Blocks, Australia (cat. no. 1209.0.55.001), available from <www.abs.gov.au>.

Contact Michael Toole on Canberra (02) 6252 7759 or email <m.toole@abs.gov.au>.
1367.2 State and Regional Indicators, Victoria, September 2005. To be released 10/11/2005.
Graph: Takings from tourist accommodation, % change Mar qtr 2004 to Mar qtr 2005.

In March quarter 2005, total takings from tourist accommodation in Victoria were approximately $291.7 million, an increase of 12.0% over March quarter 2004. Although Melbourne Tourism Region accounted for the majority (77.0%) of Victoria's accommodation takings, the highest annual growth in accommodation takings from March quarter 2004 to March quarter 2005 occurred in Lakes Tourism Region (61.4%), followed by Murray East (27.5%) and Western (23.7%) Tourism Regions. These regions experienced increases in both the number of guest arrivals and guest nights stayed.

Over the same period, many tourism regions experienced decreases in accommodation takings. Wimmera Tourism Region saw the largest fall in takings (29.6%), followed by Spa Country (9.2%) and Melbourne East (5.3%). For these and other statistics on Victorian social, economic and environmental indicators see the September quarter 2005 edition of State and Regional Indicators, Victoria (cat. no. 1367.2) due to be released 10/11/2005.

Contact Christine Sergi on Melbourne (03) 9615 7695 or email <c.sergi@abs.gov.au>.
Selected recent releases

1004.0 Statpak Online, 2006, Electronic delivery. Released 5/8/2005.

STATPAK Online is a free web-based catalogue of ABS products which meets the needs of classroom teachers. ABS products and services are listed by a range of subject areas, states and territories, and a general reference section. The key subject areas include: maths, information technology, health, physical education, tourism and hospitality studies, economics, commerce and business studies, industry and enterprise statistics, English, the arts, studies of society and the environment, agricultural and horticultural studies. The list of products change every year with the most up to date and suitable products being selected according to curriculum and classroom teaching requirements. To access STATPAK Online, visit the ABS website <www.abs.gov.au> and select 'Education Resources'.

Contact Melissa Webb on Melbourne (03) 9615 7650, Freecall 1800 623 273, or email <m.webb@abs.gov.au>.
1101.0 Catalogue of Publications and Products, 2005. Released 24/8/2005.

Lists publications and other major products and services available from ABS released in the current reference year and 4 previous years. Separated into national and state products, a brief description (abstract) of the contents of each item is given, as well as details of frequency, date of first issue, number of pages, price and ISSN or ISBN. Information is provided on ABS data available on request and availability of customised services. A title index, 'releases by medium' index for non-printed products and a subject index are also included.

Contact Domenic Fragale on Melbourne (03) 9615 7334 or email <d.fragale@abs.gov.au>.
1351.0.55.005 New Issue. Research Paper: Impact of Demographic and Economic Changes on Measured Income Inequality, September 2005, Electronic delivery. Released 12/9/2005.

This study used data from the Survey of Income and Housing (SIH). Household income inequality, as measured by Gini coefficient, increased in Australia by 2.3% from 1994–95 to 2002–03. This study looked at factors that may impact on measured household income inequality. Demographic factors such as population ageing, household composition and geographic location along with one economic factor (labour market status) were examined. About one-third of total increase in measured income inequality during 1994–95 to 2002–03 could be explained by demographic factors. Changes in labour force status during the period tended to a reduction in measured income inequality.

Contact Yongping Li on Canberra (02) 6252 5578 or email <yongping.li@abs.gov.au>.1363.0 Book Publishers, Australia, 2003-04. Released 17/8/2005.

For 2003–04 in Australia, 234 businesses were identified as book publishers while another 10 were other major contributors. These 244 businesses sold a total of 128.8 million books, primarily to book retailers, earning $1,353.2 million income. With a total income of $1,560.6 million, expenses of $1,404.4 million and a reduction in inventories of $4.2 million, the overall operating profit before tax of these businesses was $152.1 million. Book publishers and other major contributors reported an average profit margin of 9.7%. At the end of June 2004, book publishers and other major contributors employed 5,300 people, of whom 3,547 (67%) worked for the 20 largest book publishers.

Book publishers and other major contributors sold $819.6 million worth of printed books of general content covering: non-fiction ($485.3 million or 59%), fiction ($207.6 million or 25%) and children's books ($126.7 million or 16%). A further $526.1 million worth of sales were for printed educational books, while sales of electronic books (including audio books) totalled $7.5 million. New titles accounted for 53% of total book sales ($719.8 million). Australian titles accounted for 60% ($811.9 million) of total book sales, representing 65% ($343.4 million) of educational book sales and 57% ($468.5 million) of general book sales. Book publishers and other major contributors that were based (or had their head office) in Victoria accounted for $580.4 million (43%) of total Australian book sales, and gained $46.2 million in other income. This publication contains one table with state level data.

Contact Tammie Smallacombe on Adelaide (08) 8237 7329 or email <t.smallacombe@abs.gov.au>.
1371.0 Book Retailers, Australia, 2003-04. Released 20/9/2005.

The 2003–04 Book Retailers Survey collected information from businesses in four retail industries: newspaper, book and stationery retailing; department stores; supermarket and grocery stores; and retailing n.e.c.. Sales of almost 80 million new books valued at $1,406.5 million were reported by 1,572 employing businesses identified as having retail bookselling activity in 2003–04. The majority of businesses were newsagents (991 businesses), responsible for 6% (5.1 million) of new books sold. Most new books (67% or 53.2 million) were sold by the 561 bookshops. The five major department stores sold a further 19% (15.4 million) of new books, while the remaining 8% (6.1 million) were sold by the seven major supermarkets and seven businesses classified as major retailers n.e.c. A comparison of values reported in 2003–04 with 2002–03 indicated little change overall. Bookshops generated 85% of their income from the sale of new books, while newsagents earned 7% and department stores and combined supermarkets and retailing businesses n.e.c. 1% or less of total income from new book sales.

During 2003-04, 235 businesses (across 307 retail locations) involved in book retailing and with a head office in Victoria employed 2,656 people, and provided $61.7 million in wages and salaries. Their income totalled $453.1 million. This publication contains one table with state level data.

Contact Tammie Smallacombe on Adelaide (08) 8237 7329 or email <t.smallacombe@abs.gov.au>.
1380.0.55.002 New Issue. Perspectives on Regional Australia: Sources of Income, Experimental Estimates, 2000-01, Electronic delivery. Released 12/8/2005.

In Victoria during 2000–01, income from wages and salaries accounted for 71.2% of total personal income, followed by income from government cash benefits (10.4%), investment (9.2%) own unincorporated business (6.1%), and superannuation and annuity (2.4%).

Stonnington (C)(24.8%), Bayside (C)(20.2%) and Boroondara (C)(19.7%); all located within the inner Melbourne metropolitan area, had the highest proportion of income from investment of all Victorian LGAs. LGAs with the highest proportion of personal income from own unincorporated businesses were located in north-west Victoria: West Wimmera (S) (35.2%), Yarriambiack (S) (35.2%) and Buloke (S) (33.4%); with the greatest proportion of self-employed residents working in agriculture (eg. farmers). Queenscliffe (B)(9.7%), Bass Coast (S)(5.0%) and East Gippsland (S)(4.7%) had the highest proportion of income from superannuation and annuities: LGAs known as popular retirement destinations with older population profiles.

Contact Kirsten Hastwell on Adelaide (08) 8237 7369 or email <kirsten.hastwell@abs.gov.au>.
2011.0 Information Paper: Census of Population and Housing -- Proposed Products and Services, 2006. Released 6/9/2005.

While the content of the 2006 Census has been finalised, ABS is continuing its user consultation process associated with determining the suite of 2006 Census products and services. The Information Paper aims to:
  • inform Census users of previous consultation round results;
  • seek user opinion on additional data needs not included in standard outputs from the 2001 Census;
  • inform users of changes to Census data concepts and classifications;
  • provide information on proposed products and services for the 2006 Census; and (in particular)
  • seek user views on the proposals.

The Information Paper can be viewed or downloaded from the ABS website <www.abs.gov.au>. Users are also encouraged to complete the associated on-line questionnaire. The questionnaire can be accessed via the home page box titled "2006 Census: Have your say...". Submissions close 11 November 2005.

Contact Kris Leggo on Canberra (02) 6252 5124 or email <kris.leggo@abs.gov.au>.
3101.0 Australian Demographic Statistics, March Quarter 2005. Released 22/9/2005.

Victoria' population for the March quarter 2005 was 5,012,700 persons, an increase of 58,400 (1.2%) on a year earlier. The 2004 Melbourne Statistical Division population was 3,600,080.

All states and territories recorded positive growth rates for the year ended 31 March 2005. The highest annual growth was recorded by Queensland (2.0%), followed by Western Australia (1.6%), the Northern Territory (1.3%), Victoria (1.2%), New South Wales (0.7%), Tasmania (0.6%) and South Australia (0.5%), and Australian Capital Territory (0.4%).
Graph: Population growth rate, year ended March qtr 2005. Victoria grew 1.2%.

Interstate migration was the largest contributor (43.3%) to Queensland's population growth during the year ended 31 March 2005, with a gain of 33,300 persons. Net Interstate migration gains were also recorded for Western Australia (1,600 persons) and Tasmania (260 persons). New South Wales lost the largest number of persons through interstate migration (-26,900 persons), followed by South Australia (-3,900 persons), Victoria (-2,400 persons), Australian Capital Territory (-1,600) and Northern Territory (-320 persons).

Natural increase and net overseas migration contributed 52.2% and 47.8% respectively to Australia's total population growth in the year ended March 2005. Victoria gained 13,033 persons from net overseas migration during March quarter 2005. The publication contains multiple tables with state level data, including: infant death and mortality rates, deaths, births, fertility rates, experimental estimated & projected Indigenous population, and projected resident population.

Contact Rachael Hill on Canberra (02) 6252 6296 or email <rachael.hill@abs.gov.au>.
3412.0 Migration, Australia, 2003-04. Released 20/9/05.

In 2003–04, Australia's population increased by 117,600 persons due to net overseas migration, giving a net migration rate of 5.8 persons per 1,000 population. This increase represented 49% of total annual population growth, a slight reduction from 50% in 2002–03. Skilled migrants accounted for 46% of all permanent arrivals to Australia. Family Stream migrants accounted for 26%, Humanitarian Program 9%, and Non-Program Migration (consisting mostly of New Zealand citizens) comprised 18% of all permanent arrivals.

Contact Jason Rumley on Canberra (02) 6252 5406 or email <j.rumley@abs.gov.au>.
4183.0 Cultural Funding by Government, Australia, 2003-04. Released 23/8/2005.

In 2003–04, total government funding for cultural activities in Australia reached $5 billion ($5,000.7 million). The Australian Government (federal level) contributed $1,699.4 million (34%) to cultural funding, state and territory governments $2,356.2 million (47%), and local government $945.1 million (19%).

Australian, state and territory governments allocated funding to broadcasting and film ($1,075.8 million), nature parks and reserves ($1,051.8 million), other museums (consisting of museums other than art museums, $527.2 million), libraries and archives ($473.1 million). In 2003–04, government cultural funding per person amounted to $84.99 federally, $117.84 at state and territory level, and $47.27 by local government.

In 2003–04, total Victorian government funding for cultural activities was $440 million. Heritage (eg. museums, parks and libraries) made up $262.6 million of this, and arts (eg. performing arts, broadcasting, venues) $77.4 million. This equates to $73.38 per person spending on heritage and $15.67 on arts. Victorian local government cultural funding totalled $238.3 million, equivalent to $48.23 per person.

Contact Melissa Hunt on Adelaide (08) 8237 7650 or email <melissa.j.hunt@abs.gov.au>.
4390.0 Private Hospitals, Australia, 2003-04. Released 29/7/2005.

The 2003–04 national census of private hospitals covered three categories: acute hospitals, psychiatric hospitals and free-standing day hospital facilities. There was little change in characteristics of private hospital patients, with females accounting for 55.1% of all patient separations, and people aged 65 and over accounting for 35.4% of separations. Overall, there were 147 patient separations per 1,000 female population and 122 separations per 1,000 male population.

Private hospitals operating in Australia decreased 2.1% in number from 536 in 2002–03 to 525 in 2003–04. The decrease was reflected in both acute and psychiatric (1.7%) and free-standing day hospitals (2.5%). This was the first downturn in free-standing day hospital numbers since 1993–94. Despite the decrease, available beds and chairs increased 2.0% from 26,364 in 2002–03 to 26,589 in 2003–04. Similarly, total patient separations increased by 3.3% from 2.6 million in 2002–03 to 2.7 million in 2003–04. Private hospitals provided 7.3 million days of hospitalisation to patients in 2003–04, an increase of 1.0% on 7.2 million in 2002–03. Staff numbers also increased by 2.2% to 48,577 (full-time equivalent).

During 2003–04, private acute and psychiatric hospitals in Australia generated $5,933 million income, an 8.7% increase on 2002-03. Over the five years to 2003–04, the average annual increase in income was 9.3%. When costs are adjusted to remove effects of price changes over the period, the increases are 4.8 % from the previous year and 5.9 % average annual increase over the five years to 2003–04.

In Victoria during 2003-04, there were 135 private hospitals comprised of 75 acute (5,882 beds), 6 psychiatric (378 beds) and 54 free-standing day hospitals. Some 74.0% of private acute and psychiatric hospitals were located in the Melbourne Statistical Division, and 26.0% in rest of state; a third (34.6%) were not for profit (eg. religious, charitable, bush nursing), and two-thirds (65.4%) run for profit.

Victorian private acute and psychiatric hospitals had 559,000 separations for 1,735,400 patient days, giving a 3.1 day average length of stay; with a bed occupancy rate of 75.7%. Some 85.0% of these separations held hospital insurance with a registered health insurance fund or general insurance company, and 13.2% did not.

Comparable data for public hospitals is available in Australian Hospitals 2003–04, produced by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW). According to the AIHW, nearly 4 in 10 hospital patients in Australia were admitted to private hospitals in 2003–04, representing nearly one-third of all hospitalisation days.

A related report is the annual 4390.0.40.002 Private Health Establishments: Free Standing Day Hospital Facilities Data Report on Hardcopy, released 30/9/2005. Tables show statistics additional to those published in Private Hospitals, Australia (4390.0). This data report consists of 16 tables showing a wide range of information for States and Australia, including specialised services, procedures performed, staffing, income, expenditure and broad morbidity data (age, sex, principal diagnosis and principal procedure).

Stephanie Callaghan on Brisbane (07) 3222 6047 or email <stephanie.callaghan@abs.gov.au>.
4704.0 The Health and Welfare of Australia's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, 2005. Released 26/8/2005.

This report brings together, from a wide variety of sources, information about the health and welfare of Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Much of the data comes from sources that cover all Australians but which separately identify Indigenous Australians. Other sources include special purpose ABS surveys, such as the 1994 National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Survey (NATSIS), the 2002 National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Survey (NATSISS), the Indigenous supplement to the 2001 National Health Survey (NHS (I), administrative data from government systems and Indigenous specific service delivery programs.

The report primarily presents a broad national picture and, wherever possible, uses existing and new data sources to reflect Indigenous population diversity, including a separate chapter about Torres Strait Islander people. Also where possible, changes over time in Indigenous people's health and welfare are described. The disparities in health and welfare between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians are also explored. Over the last decade, there have been significant improvements in quantity and quality of information about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples' health and welfare.

Between 1994 and 2002, the proportion of Indigenous people aged 18–64 years in mainstream employment rose from 31% to 38%, and unemployment fell from 24% to 13%. Indigenous households that were owner/purchasers increased from 26% to 30%. Between 1991 and 2002, there were significant declines in Indigenous mortality in Western Australia for both males and females. There was also a significant decline in infant mortality in Western Australia, South Australia and Northern Territory. Of the main causes of death examined, only mortality from circulatory system diseases showed a consistently significant decline. Despite significant improvement in Indigenous education participation and attainment during recent years, Indigenous people were about half as likely as non-Indigenous people to have a non-school qualification in 2002 (32% compared with 57%). This report runs to 290 pages and has an extensive list of references. The publication contains some state data, and some data disaggregated by major cities/regional/remote classification.

Contact Sharon Pech on Canberra (02) 6252 6301 or email <sharon.pech@abs.gov.au>.
5338.0 Final Issue. Balance of Payments, Australia: Supplementary Country Statistics, 2004. Released 29/7/2005.

The current account deficit for 2004 was $54.0 billion, an increase of $7.2 billion on 2003 ( $46.9 billion deficit). The current account deficit as a percentage of Australia’s gross domestic product (GDP) increased from 6.0% in 2003 to 6.4% in 2004. The increase in current account deficit was the net effect of:
  • an increase of $1.4 billion in net goods deficit to $24.7 billion
  • an increase of $4.9 billion in net income deficit to $27.9 billion
  • an increase of $0.7 billion in net services deficit to $1.1 billion.

When analysed by country, Australia’s largest current account surpluses in 2004 were with:
  • New Zealand, surplus increased by $1.4 billion (24%) to $7.0 billion,
  • India, surplus increased by $2.0 billion (73%) to $4.7 billion,
  • Republic of Korea, surplus increased by $1.1 billion (31%) to $4.7 billion,
  • Japan, surplus increased by $2.2 billion (114%) to $4.2 billion,
  • Asia n.e.s., surplus increased by $0.6 billion (29%) to $2.7 billion.

The largest current account deficits in 2004 were with:
  • United States of America, deficit increased by $1.8 billion (12%) to $16.5 billion,
  • Germany, deficit increased by $0.1 billion (1%) to $7.7 billion,
  • People’s Republic of China, deficit increased by $1.6 billion (31%) to $6.9 billion,
  • United Kingdom, deficit increased by $3.7 billion (147%) to $6.2 billion,
  • International Capital Markets (eg. securities and loans), deficit decreased by $1.3 billion (41%) to $4.6 billion.

This is the final issue of this publication. Country statistics on an international merchandise trade basis, and country statistics covering international trade in services will continue to be available as AusStats tables on the ABS website <www.abs.gov.au>. These tables are released with International Trade in Goods and Services, Australia (cat. no. 5368.0). The country breakdown of data on income credits and debits will continue to be available from the publication International Investment Position: Supplementary Country Statistics (cat. no. 5352.0). This publication presents Australia level data.

Contact Tom Jebbink on Canberra (02) 6252 5540 or email <tom.jebbink@abs.gov.au>.
5352.0 International Investment Position, Australia: Supplementary Country Statistics, 2004. Released 5/8/2005.

During 2004, the level of foreign investment in Australia increased by $165.1 billion to reach $1,154.8 billion at 31 December 2004. Portfolio investment accounted for $620.1 billion (54%), direct investment $342.6 billion (30%), other investment liabilities $143.6 billion (12%) and financial derivatives $48.4 billion (4%). Of the portfolio investment liabilities, debt securities accounted for $432.0 billion (70%) and equity securities for $188.2 billion (30%). This publication presents Australia level data.

The leading investor countries at 31 December 2004 were:
  • United States of America ($368.4 billion or 32%)
  • United Kingdom ($281.6 billion or 24%)
  • Japan ($43.8 billion or 4%)
  • Netherlands ($26.0 billion or 2%)
  • Hong Kong (SAR of China) ($23.4 billion or 2%)
  • New Zealand ($22.4 billion or 2%)
  • Switzerland ($20.5 billion or 2%)
  • Belgium and Luxembourg ($20.4 billion or 2%).

Contact Sandra Waters on Canberra (02) 6252 7129 or email <sandra.waters@abs.gov.au>.
5673.0.55.003 Regional Wage and Salary Earner Statistics, Australia - Data Cubes, 2002-03. Released 21/9/2005.

These spreadsheets include various cross-tabulations of wage and salary earner characteristics such as: age, sex, occupation, wage and salary income and total income for 2001-02 and 2002-03. Data for earlier years are available in Cat. no. 5673.0.55.001. Most of the data is presented at Statistical Local Area (SLA) level for all states and territories. However, tables that include the 'occupation' variable are not currently available for 2002-03 financial year, but expected for late-2005 release. Data was compiled from the Australian Taxation Office's (ATO) Individual Income Tax Return Database (confidentialised and aggregated), as part of ABS's program to increase the range of available regional statistics, particularly through the use of administrative information from other government agencies.

During 2002-03, Melbourne (C) - Inner SLA had 3,653 wage and salary earners, whose average annual wage and salary income was $42,560; or alternatively, had a median wage and salary income of $32,269. This population was 53.7% male and 46.3% female.

Contact Kirsten Hastwell by phone (08) 8237 7369 or email <kirsten.hastwell@abs.gov.au>.
6224.0.55.001 New Issue. Labour Force, Australia: Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Families - Electronic Delivery, June 2005. Released 21/7/2005.

This product replaces the family data cubes previously delivered through cat. no. 6291.0.55.001. The annual datacubes (SuperTable format) contain detailed information about labour force status and other characteristics of families using original data collected in the Labour Force Survey, and permit state level presentation.

Contact Kate McNally on Canberra (02) 6252 6565 or email <kate.mcnally@abs.gov.au>.
6523.0 Household Income and Income Distribution, Australia, 2003-04. Released 4/8/2005.

The 2003–04 Survey of Income and Housing provides estimates of income, net worth and other characteristics of households and persons. It includes estimates of both income and wealth distribution across the population. Households with middle and high income levels tended to have wages and salaries as the principal source of income, while for low income households government pensions and allowances were the main income source. Middle income households contained more people on average than both low and high income households, but contained fewer employed persons than high income households (1.5 compared to 1.9). Low income households averaged 0.5 employed persons. See also: Household Income and Income Distribution, Australia - Detailed Tables, 2003-04, Electronic delivery (cat. no. 6523.0.55.001). Released 4/8/2005.

Tasmania (-13%) Queensland (-5%) were below the national mean weekly income level. The Australian Capital Territory and Northern Territory had the highest mean incomes: 22% and 17% above national average, respectively. At national level, mean incomes in capital cities averaged 16% above those in the balance of state. The largest differences were for NSW and Tasmania, where capital city incomes were 26% and 24% higher than their balance of state, respectively.

Contact Jan Gatenby on Canberra (02) 6252 6174 or email <jan.gatenby@abs.gov.au>.
6530.0 Household Expenditure Survey, Australia: Summary of Results, 2003-04. Released 11/8/2005.

The 2003–04 Household Expenditure Survey (HES) ran as a subsample of the 2003–04 Survey of Income and Housing (SIH). HES collected information on expenditure, income, net worth and other characteristics of households resident in private dwellings throughout Australia.

In the 12 months to June 2004, Australian households spent an average $883 on goods and services each week. This was an increase of 26% since the 1998–99 survey. Part of this increase can be attributed to inflation: over the five years since the previous survey, goods and services (measured by consumer price index) rose 18%. Over the same period, mean gross household income per week increased by 28%, and average household size decreased from 2.60 people to 2.53 people.

In 2003–04 the largest broad categories of Australian household expenditure were:
  • food and non-alcoholic beverages, with average household expenditure of $153 per week (17% of household goods and services expenditure),
  • transport $139 per week (16%), and
  • current housing costs $135 per week (15%).

Graph: Average weekly household expenditure on goods and services. Dollars per week expenditure on 12 macro categories of expenditure.

The HES publication presents 6 tables with useful state level data, some of which have capital city/rest of state definition. It also looks at Australia level sub-populations, such as: single parent families, families with dependent children, owner/renter households, income quintile, and income source. A five-yearly time series is presented back to 1984. See also: Household Expenditure Survey, Australia: Detailed Expenditure Items, 2003-04, Electronic delivery (cat. no. 6535.0.55.001).

Contact Jan Gatenby on Canberra (02) 6252 6174 or email <jan.gatenby@abs.gov.au>.
7106.0 Australian Farming in Brief, 2005, Brochure. Released 29/8/2005.
Graph: Land use on farms 1994, 1999 & 2004 data on number of agricultural establishments, their area (ha) and area of crops.

Contact Nigel Gibson on Tasmania (03) 6222 5846 or email <nigel.gibson@abs.gov.au>.
7123.2.55.001 Agricultural State Profile, Victoria, 2003-04, Electronic delivery. Released 10/8/2005.

The agriculture industry in Victoria is quite diverse, ranging from small establishments engaged in horticulture to large properties mainly devoted to sheep, cattle or cereal production. The main broadacre crops are wheat and barley for grain. The main livestock raised are cattle for beef and dairy production, and sheep for meat and fine wool. The apple, pear, citrus and stone fruit industries are significant. The main vegetable crops include potatoes, tomatoes and carrots.

At 30 June 2004, the estimated 32,463 Victorian farms were mainly involved in: beef cattle farming (24.1% of farms), dairy cattle farming (19.8%), sheep farming (10.5%), grain growing (9.7%), grain-sheep/grain-beef cattle farming (8.6%), sheep-beef cattle farming (7.3%), and other industries (20.1%). An estimated 13.6 million hectares or 60% of Victoria's land area was used for agricultural activity in 2003-04. Just over 25% of Victoria's agricultural land (3.5 million ha) was used for cropping (excluding crops harvested for hay, seed, pastures and grasses).

In 2003-04, gross farm product (value added in production by farm businesses) for Victoria was $5.8 billion. Victorian exports of agricultural commodities amounted to $1.7 billion.

Principal Victorian commodities included:
  • wheat production: 3,145,500 tonnes
  • pear (excluding Nashi) production: 121,200 tonnes
  • tomato production: 270,200 tonnes
  • meat cattle number: 2.4 million
  • milk cattle number: 1.9 million
  • sheep and lamb number: 20.0 million

Victorian establishments with an estimated value of agricultural operations (EVAO) of $5,000 or more decreased 11.4% from 36,656 establishments in 1997 to 32,463 in 2004. Goulburn (5,638 establishments, 17.4% of Vic agricultural establishments) and Western District (4,271, 13.2%) Statistical Divisions had the highest number of agricultural establishments in 2004.

Contact John Moody on Hobart (03) 6222 5867 or email <john.moody@abs.gov.au>.
7124.0 New Issue. Historical Selected Agriculture Commodities, by State (1861 to Present), 2004, Electronic delivery (data cube). Released 5/9/2005.

This product contains historical agricultural production data on: area and production of wheat, oats, barley, maize and potatoes; the number of sheep, cattle, pigs and horses; and tonnes of wool produced. Time series information is available for New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia and Australia.

Contact Karen Connaughton on Canberra (02) 6252 5337, email <karen.connaughton@abs.gov.au>.
7503.0 Value of Agricultural Commodities Produced, Australia, 2003-04. Released 12/9/2005.

In Australia during 2003–04, the gross value of agricultural commodities produced rose by $4.4 billion (up 13% to $36.9 billion) as drought conditions eased throughout much of Australia. Most of the increase was due to a rise in crop value (up 32% to $20.5 billion ). The gross value of livestock slaughterings and other disposals rose by 2% to $10.9 billion, while the value of livestock products fell 14% to $5.5 billion. The most valuable agricultural commodities were cattle and calf slaughterings and other disposals (up 4% to $6.7 billion ), wheat (up 109% to $5.6 billion ), milk (steady at $2.8 billion ), wool (down 28% to $2.4 billion ), sheep and lamb slaughterings and other disposals (steady at $2.0 billion).

In Victoria during 2003–04, the gross value of agricultural production increased by 17% to $8.7 billion. This represented 24% of Australian agricultural production total gross value. The gross value of crops increased by 39% to $4.0 billion. As Victoria recovered from drought, a drop in average prices was more than offset by large increases in the production of all major crops. Some of the more significant increases in gross value occurred in wheat (up 170% to $666 million), barley (up 187% to $383 million) and cereal crops for hay (up 281% to $165 million). The gross value of potatoes rose by 25% to $133 million, with the increase brought about entirely by increased production as average price remained steady. The gross value of livestock slaughterings and other disposals increased by 10% to $2.4 billion. The gross value of livestock products decreased by 4% to $2.3 billion, due mainly to a decrease in the value of wool (down 27% to $491 million).

Contact Geoff Ellerton on Hobart (03) 6222 5856 or email <geoff.ellerton@abs.gov.au>.
8655.0 Cafes and Restaurants, Australia, 2003-04. Released 14/7/2005.

At end June 2004, there were 15,083 businesses in cafe and restaurant services, with 15,567 locations around Australia. This comprised 13,286 cafe and restaurant businesses and 1,796 catering businesses; which together employed 188,102 persons. Three quarters (75.1%) of these locations were based in metropolitan areas. There were 1.1 million seats available for dining in cafe and restaurant businesses. More than a third (34.1% or 5,151) of all cafe and restaurant services businesses were licensed.

During 2003–04, cafe and restaurant businesses generated $10,129.6 million income, or an average $671,600 per business. Total expenses incurred were $9,733.2 million. Total industry value added by these businesses was $4,158.2 million, equivalent to 0.5% of Australia's gross domestic product (GDP). Their operating profit before tax was $404.4 million, giving an operating profit margin of 4%.

The majority (63.4%) of cafe and restaurant service businesses employed less than 10 persons. These businesses accounted for 20.6% ($2,094.1 million) of total income, representing $219,200 per business. Larger businesses (those employing 50 persons or more) accounted for only 1.2% of all businesses, but generated just under a third of all income (32.4% or $3,284.6 million), representing $18.2 million per business.

Victoria had 3,515 businesses in cafe and restaurant services employing 46,767 persons, to provide $730.7 million wages and salaries and generate $2,425.9 million total income.

Contact William Milne on Melbourne (03) 9615 7862 or email <william.milne@abs.gov.au>.
8695.0 Accommodation Services, Australia, 2003-04. Released 15/8/2005.

At end June 2004, there were 5,682 accommodation businesses operating in 6,372 locations around Australia, employing 91,399 persons. In 2003–04, these businesses generated $8,095.9 million income, representing an average $1,424,800 per business. Total expenses were $7,322.3 million. The total industry value added of these businesses was $4,165.9 million, which equated to 0.5% of Australia's gross domestic product (GDP). The operating profit before tax for these businesses was $776.7 million, resulting in an operating profit margin of 9.7%. Accommodation businesses incurred $1,120.6 million in capital expenditure, with renovations and refurbishments accounting for 16.1% ($180 million). Motels (2,396 locations) were the most prominent accommodation type (37.6% of all locations) , followed by caravan parks (1,253 locations, 19.7%), serviced apartments (578 locations, 9.1%) and licensed hotels (535 locations, 8.4%). This publication has one table with state level data.

Contact William Milne on Melbourne (03) 9615 7862 or email <william.milne@abs.gov.au>.
9208.0 Survey of Motor Vehicle Use, Australia. Released 19/09/2005.

In the 12 months ended 31 October 2004, there were an estimated 3.54 million vehicles registered in Victoria. The largest group was passenger vehicles (81.0%), followed by light commercial vehicles (12.6%), motor cycles (2.8%), rigid trucks (2.5%), articulated trucks (0.6%), and non-freight carrying trucks (0.1%). The 3.54 million vehicles represented an increase of 0.3 million vehicles (9.5%) compared with 31 October 2000.

Victorian motor vehicles travelled an estimated 52,583 million kilometres during the 12 months ended 31 October 2004. While the number of vehicles increased 9.5% compared with 31 October 2000, the distance travelled has decreased 3.5% over this time. Victorian passenger vehicles accounted for 76.4% of total distance travelled, light commercial trucks 15.6%, rigid trucks 3.3%, articulated trucks 3.4% and buses 0.7%. Articulated trucks averaged 87,700 kilometres per year, compared with 19,800 for rigid trucks and 14,000 for passenger vehicles.

Australian registered motor vehicles each travelled an average of 14,800 kilometres in the 12 months ended 31 October 2004. Queensland (15,600 kilometres), Australian Capital Territory (15,000 kilometres), Northern Territory (14,900 kilometres) and Victoria (14,900 kilometres) were above the national average, while vehicles registered in Tasmania travelled the least number of kilometres (13,000). Personal and other use accounted for 53.1% of kilometres travelled by Australian passenger vehicles, travel to and from work 25.5% and business use 21.4%. This publication contains several tables of state data.

Contact Margaret Thomson on Brisbane (07) 3222 6180 or email <margaret.thomson@abs.gov.au>.
Classification and framework issues

1205.0.55.001 New Issue. Information Paper: Cause of Death Certification Australia, 2004, Electronic delivery. Released 1/7/2005.

This booklet is produced for the guidance of Medical Practitioners in completing Medical Certificates of Causes of Death. Accurate cause of death information is important to the public health sector and medical researchers, for evaluating and developing measures to improve the health of Australians. For family, knowing the cause of death can facilitate awareness of conditions that may occur in other family members.

Contact Ros Higgins on Brisbane (07) 3222 6060 or email <ros.higgins@abs.gov.au>.
1216.0.15.001 Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC), July 2005, Electronic delivery. Released 15/7/2005.

The Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) is a hierarchical classification of geographical areas which consists of a number of interrelated structures. It provides a common framework of statistical geography and enables the production of statistics which are comparable. ASGC 2005 has a date of effect of 1 July 2005. The product contains ASGC levels and hierarchy structure of Local Government Area (LGA), Main Structure, Statistical District (SD) and Statistical Region (SR). The smallest level of geography for this edition is the Statistical Local Area (SLA).

Contact the Assistant Director, Area Classification, on Canberra (02) 6252 5620 or email <geography@abs.gov.au>.
1216.0.15.002 New Issue. Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) Concordances, 2005, Electronic delivery. Released 29/7/2005.

This product contains four separate concordance files (comma delimited, with file format notes).

    2001 CD to 2005 SLA Concordance: This file assists conversion of ASGC Edition 2001 Collection Districts (CDs) to ASGC Edition 2005 Statistical Local Areas (SLAs).

    2004 SLA to 2005 SLA Concordance: This file assists conversion of 2004 SLAs to 2005 SLAs.

    2005 LGA to 2005 SLA Concordance: This file identifies which LGAs comprise of which SLAs for 2005.

    2005 ASGC Structures Concordance: This file shows the relationship of Statistical Local Area (SLA) within 2005 ASGC Structures: Local Government Area Structure, Main Structure, Statistical District Structure and Statistical Region Structure.

Contact the Assistant Director, Area Classification, on Canberra (02) 6252 5620 or email <geography@abs.gov.au>.
1249.0 Australian Standard Classification of Cultural and Ethnic Groups (ASCCEG), 2005-06. Released 7/7/2005.

ABS developed the Australian Standard Classification of Cultural and Ethnic Groups (ASCCEG) for use in the collection, storage and dissemination of all Australian statistical and administrative data relating to ethnic and cultural identity, as well as ancestry. The classification was a response to wide community interest in Australian population cultural diversity, and consequent need to provide quality and consistent statistical and administrative data on cultural and ethnic groups within Australia. It was first published in 2000.

The ABS has and will continue to use the classification in its own statistical work, for example, in classifying ancestry data from the Census of Population and Housing. ABS urges ASCCEG use by other government agencies, community groups, academic and private sector organisations which collect, analyse, or use information relating to ethnicity, cultural diversity and ancestry. This will improve the quality and comparability of data from these sources. Classification development involved extensive consultation with users and producers of cultural diversity data, academics, experts, ethnic and community groups. The assistance and efforts of numerous organisations and individuals who provided information and advice is gratefully acknowledged.

Contact Chris Kunz on Canberra (02) 6252 7066 or email <chris.kunz@abs.gov.au>.
1252.0.55.001 National Localities Index, Australia, July 2005, Electronic delivery. Released 15/7/2005.

The National Localities Index (NLI) has been developed by ABS to assist users assign Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) main structure codes to address based data. The ASGC is used by ABS for collection and dissemination of geographic statistics, and is an essential reference for users to understand and interpret the geographic content of ABS statistics. Coding data to ASGC main structure allows data to be directly compared with ABS and other information.

The NLI consists of two parts: a Localities Index and a Streets Sub-Index. The definition of ‘locality’ is kept very broad to make the NLI as comprehensive as possible. It is defined as a place where people live or work. The majority of localities are wholly within one Statistical Local Area (SLA) and address data for these localities can be ASGC coded using only the Localities Index. The remainder of localities, approximately 5%, cross SLA boundaries. The NLI Streets Sub-Index contains street data for these split localities: names, types and number ranges; so that addresses can be coded to their respective SLA. ABS encourages organisations to use the ASGC and NLI to improve comparability and usefulness of data with a geographic dimension.

Contact Alec Bamber on Canberra (02) 6252 5620 or email <alec.bamber@abs.gov.au>.
1267.0 Australian Standard Classification of Languages (ASCL), 2005-06. Released 14/7/2005.

ABS developed the Australian Standard Classification of Languages (ASCL) for use in collection, storage and dissemination of all Australian statistical and administrative data relating to languages spoken in Australia. The classification was a response to wide community interest in Australian population language usage, and consequent need to provide quality and consistent statistical and administrative data on this topic. It was first published in 1997.

ABS urges ASCL use by agencies and community groups which collect or analyse information relating to language usage. This will improve the quality and comparability of data from all sources. This Second Edition (2005 revision) is part of a periodical review process that aims to reflect changes in Australia's language profile. The review also enabled classification improvements in terms of language coverage (particularly for Australian Indigenous Languages) and the grouping of certain languages. Classification development and review involved extensive consultation with users and producers of language data, academics, experts, ethnic and community groups; whose assistance is gratefully acknowledged.

Contact Peter Marion on Canberra (02) 6252 6222 or email <peter.marion@abs.gov.au>.
1351.0.55.004 New Issue. Research Paper: Estimating Industry-Level Multifactor Productivity for the Market-Sector Industries in Australia, 2005, Electronic delivery. Released 14/7/2005.

To meet user demand, ABS has embarked on a project estimating industry-level multifactor productivity (MFP). This paper discusses the methodological choices, data construction and measurement issues involved. Experimental estimates of MFP based on both gross output and value added for 12 market-sector industries in Australia are presented. Several related issues, which are important for the assessment and interpretation of industry-level MFP estimates, are also discussed. They include the open versus closed economy MFP measures; the difference between aggregate and industry-level approaches to estimation of aggregate MFP; and the assumption underlying the Domar aggregation formula. The paper shows that the Domar aggregation formula in its original form can be derived without using the restrictive assumption of equal prices for primary inputs across industries.

Productivity is one of the driving forces behind economic growth, and in the long run it also determines a country’s living standards and economic well being. Productivity statistics are therefore important indicators for policy makers, economic commentators, researchers and others who are interested in issues of productivity and economic growth. ABS publishes a variety of productivity measures in the Australian System of National Accounts (ABS cat. no. 5204.0). The most comprehensive measure at present is the index of multifactor productivity (MFP) for the aggregate market-sector. The market-sector in Australia consists of 12 industries: agriculture, forestry and fishing; mining; manufacturing; electricity, gas and water; construction; wholesale; retail; accommodation, cafes and restaurants; transport and storage; communication; finance and insurance; and cultural and recreational. There are no official estimates of MFP dissected by industry; and the only available industry-level productivity estimates are based on labour productivity, which is a partial measure and unsatisfactory in a number of ways.

Thus, a project was initiated by ABS to estimate industry-level MFP in Australia for the purpose of statistical production. It intends to build on results of recent integration between Australian national accounts and its input–output system. It also aims to expand the ABS productivity program to be in line with a few other leading international statistical agencies, such as the U.S. Bureau of Labour Statistics and Statistics Canada, that have a comprehensive productivity program covering both business sector and its constituent industries. Our emphasis is on the methodological choices, data construction and measurement issues associated with estimation.

From the perspective of statistical production, two approaches to estimating industry-level MFP are considered: the input–output based approach, which was developed by Statistics Canada; and one recently recommended by the OECD Productivity Manual (2001). The latter approach is closely related to a well-known framework developed by Jorgenson, Gollop and Fraumeni (1987), and is also a bottom-up, non-parametric approach based on production economics. After considering the current ABS data environment, our estimation of industry-level MFP follows the OECD approach and, hence, is able to facilitate international comparison. Using this approach, both gross output and value added based MFP indices are derived.

Contact Shiji Zhao on Canberra (02) 6252 6053 or email <shiji.zhao@abs.gov.au>.
5514.0 Australian System of Government Finance Statistics: Concepts, Sources and Methods, 2005. Released 2/9/2005.

This publication describes the conceptual and analytical framework underlying government finance statistics in Australia. It also provides an overview of data sources and compilation methodology used.

Contact Robert Bourke on Canberra (02) 6252 7589 or email <robert.bourke@abs.gov.au>.
Other selected releases

1259.0.30.001 Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) Digital Boundaries (Intercensal), Australia on CD-ROM, 2005. Released 22/7/2005.
4714.0.55.003 New Issue. National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Survey, Australia: Summary Booklet, 2002. Released 14/9/2005.
5501.0.55.001 Government Financial Estimates, Australia, Electronic Delivery, 2005-06. Released 19/8/2005.
5232.0.55.001 New Issue. Assets and Liabilities of Australian Securitisers, June Quarter 2005, Electronic delivery. Released 26/8/2005.
5439.0.55.001 New Issue. Information Paper: Changes to Ausstats Tables for International Merchandise Imports, Australia, July 2005, Electronic publication. Released 19/8/2005.
6298.0 Labour Force Survey Standard Errors, 2005. Released 8/9/2005.
8104.0 Research and Experimental Development, Businesses, Australia, 2003-04. Released 28/9/2005.
8501.0.55.003 Contribution of Gambling to Retail Estimates, June Quarter 2005, Electronic delivery. Released 9/8/2005.
Free ABS publication access for government. People working in Victorian government agencies and local government offices should be able to access ABS publications at no cost from their desktop PCs using the ABS@ facility.

ABS@ has:

  • all ABS publications from 1998 onwards in pdf format;
  • 2001 Community Profiles at all geographic levels;
  • time series spreadsheets in Excel format; and
  • datacubes in SuperTable format (which allow users to construct tables to suit their requirements).

In local government, the council's extranet coordinator must register a person as a user. In state government agencies, access to ABS@ is through the Victorian state government intranet (or Lotus Notes in some Departments), on the index page using the research and information button; with no registration required.

For further information contact Heather Burns, Manager, ABS Victoria Information Consultancy Section on (03) 9615 7976 or email <heather.burns@abs.gov.au>. Email is the preferred mode of contact.

Free ABS publications online. From 1 July 2005, all ABS electronic publications (both PDF and HTML based content) published from 1998 onwards, along with electronic "publication tables" in spreadsheet or data-cube format, are available free from the ABS website <www.abs.gov.au>. Printed copies still carry a price, but most products should be available electronically.

Each ABS office offers practical, informative and relevant training to help you develop your statistical skills. This training is primarily targeted to public sector bodies.

What courses are available at ABS Victoria?
  • Basic Statistical Analysis
  • Basic Survey Design
  • Making Quality Informed Decisions
  • Turning Data Into Information
  • Understanding Demographic Data
  • Understanding 2001 Census Data
  • SuperTABLE Basics
  • Understanding Labour Statistics
  • CDATA 2001 Introductory

Courses - October to December, 2005

Making Quality Informed Decisions
This course introduces the concept of 'wholistic quality' through the use of a data quality framework for a statistical collection. The framework ensures that users of statistics are able to assess whether the statistics are fit for their intended use. This course provides a framework to evaluate the quality of available data sources, and use this knowledge in the decision-making process.

Course Length: 1 day

Course Dates: 18 October, 2005

Course fee: $325 (lunch provided)

Basic Survey Design
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.

Course Length: 2 Days

Course Date: 29 & 30 November, 2005

Course fee: $550.00 (lunch provided)

For further information regarding statistical training, nominations and bookings please contact Maxine McDermott on (03) 9615 7080 or email <vic.coordination@abs.gov.au>.


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 Chairperson
Department of Treasury and Finance
Vin Martin
email <Vin.Martin@dtf.vic.gov.au>

Department of Treasury and Finance
Peter Fuhrmann
email <peter.fuhrmann@dtf.vic.gov.au>

Department of Premier and Cabinet
Donald Speagle
email <donald.speagle@dpc.vic.gov.au>

Department of Innovation, Industry and Regional Development
Patrick Webb
email <patrick.webb@iird.vic.gov.au>

Department of Education and Training
Ian Burrage
email <burrage.ian.n@edumail.vic.gov.au>

Department of Human Services Victoria
Dr Robert Brazenor
email <robert.brazenor@dhs.vic.gov.au>

Department of Justice
Dr Roslyn Kelleher
email <roslyn.kelleher@justice.vic.gov.au>

Department of Infrastructure
Philip Norman
email <philip.norman@doi.vic.gov.au>

Department for Victorian Communities
Dr David Adams
email <david.adams@dvc.vic.gov.au>

Joanne Duffy
email <Joanne.Duffy@dvc.vic.gov.au>

Department of Sustainability and Environment
John Hanna
email <john.hanna@dse.vic.gov.au>

Department of Primary Industries
To be advised

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>

Reception Level 5
CGU Tower, 485 LaTrobe Street
Melbourne VIC 3000

Postal Address
GPO Box 2796Y
Melbourne VIC 3001

ABS Website

ABS Victoria
Vince Lazzaro
email <tim.brennan@abs.gov.au>

Statistical Coordination Branch
Joseph Salvatore
(03) 9615 7924
email <joseph.salvatore@abs.gov.au>

Assistant Director
Neil McLean
(03) 9615 7463
email <neil.mclean@abs.gov.au>

Assistant Director
Antonella Caruso
(03) 9615 7860
email <antonella.caruso@abs.gov.au>

Assistant Director (a/g)
Christine Sergi
(03) 9615 7695
email <c.sergi@abs.gov.au>

Statistics Victoria Editor
Alan Page
(03) 9615 7899
email <alan.page@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. Elect to receive your copy of this newsletter in PDF format by contacting Alan Page on (03) 9615 7899 or email <alan.page@abs.gov.au>. The ABS encourages further dissemination of this newsletter through email, or by its placement on your organisation's intranet.

2. Go to the ABS website <www.abs.gov.au>. Select 'News & Media' then 'ABS Newsletters' and then 'Statistics Victoria'. You can access current and previous copies of Statistics Victoria, as well as many other ABS newsletters.