Australia's population growth rate remains alarmingly high | Sustainable Population Australia

Australia's population growth rate remains alarmingly high

18 December 2013

Australia’s growth rate of 1.8 per cent is alarmingly high, unsustainable and unacceptable, according to Sustainable Population Australia (SPA).

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) released its demographic figures for the year ending June 2013 yesterday, revealing Australia’s population growth rate remains at 1.8 per cent. Population growth for the period was 407,000 with natural increase contributing 162,700 people and Net Oversea Migration (NOM) 244,400 people.

National President of SPA, Ms Jenny Goldie, says if Federal Treasurer Joe Hockey is correct and the Australian economy is in a woeful state, then the last thing the country needs is rapid population growth.

“Every new person, whether migrant or baby born here, requires at least $200,000 in infrastructure.” Says Ms Goldie. “So for the 407,000 extra people we gained in one year, that will cost $81.4 billion in infrastructure. If the economy is in dire straits and savings need to be made, then cutting the population growth rate would be the most effective measure.

“Unemployment is up and Holden about to depart our shores. Qantas is in trouble. China is starting to wean itself off Australian coal. The falling dollar may help with exports and manufacturing but will mean Australians have to pay more for imported petrol and diesel, in turn dampening the economy.”

Ms Goldie says the community can accept spending cuts but not when net migration is pushing a quarter of a million every year.

“By all means maintain and even increase the humanitarian component but the government must cut skilled migration severely. There are really very few skills that are required and, anyway, as a developed nation, we should be training our own and not poaching from other countries.”

Ms Goldie says the fact that natural increase is still rising despite below replacement fertility is a great concern and calls for a capping of family benefits at the second child as the UK Government is considering doing.

Further information: Jenny Goldie 0401 921 453