Population and Migration

Migration seems to be a current controversy. Nick Behrens has a recent post questioning the low Queensland share of overseas migration Overseas Migrants to Queensland: Where the bloody hell are you?

The most recent data from ABS: 3218.0 – Regional Population Growth, Australia, 2016-17

This provides ABS estimates of net overseas migration by SA2. I have no idea how good this data is at SA2 level but let’s aggregate it to SA4 for Queensland.

Migration 2

Well it looks like overseas migrants like the Gold Coast with the Surfers Paradise SA2 a standout within that. We should also look at this in terms of population for each area:

Migration 1

There are three themes which appear in these ABS overseas migration numbers: 1) Inner city 2) Education 3) Agricultural labour. The position of Cairns SA4 above its weight straddles these three sectors. These are not all apparent so lets look at SA2 level for Cairns SA4.

Migration 4

Beyond the City the JCU location at Smithfield stands out. This is replicated across Queensland and you can pretty much pick out university location from browsing the data. Possibly some surprises here in agricultural locations such as Mareeba on the scale but this is also replicated in many similar Queensland locations with more intensive agricultural labour requirements.

On a % of SA2 population basis Port Douglas moves higher:

Migration 3

I have recently posted on data around Cairns City SA2: ATO income data and Cairns City

Internal migration numbers for Cairns SA4 in 2016 – 2017 were negative. Net overseas migration is a distinguishing factor which separates Cairns from other regions outside SEQ and kept population growth in Cairns for that year above other regions outside SEQ.


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