Australia’s population currently stands at 22.8 million people with the birth rate at one birth every one minute and forty-seven seconds and the death rate at one death every three minutes and thirty-six seconds. The government should consider keeping the population constant or to let it rise under control with a population plan. To determine how the population should look by 2050 we can explore three demographical issues: * Population Growth rates
This is how fast or slow population is decreasing/increasing over time. Factors included are natural increase (Number of births less the number of deaths) and net overseas migration (Migrants entering the country less than those leaving). * Changing Population Structure
The changing trends of demographic structure such as the ageing population * The Spatial Distribution
Where residents are located.
Two main factors that contribute greatly to population growth are: Natural Increase and Net Overseas Migration. Australia’s population grew by 1.4% during the year ended 30th June 2011. The growth rate has been declining since 2008 when the peak was 2.2%. Natural increase and net overseas migration contributed 47% and 53% respectively to total population growth for the year ended 30 June 2011. Since 1970 the government has supported multiculturalism in Australia and has put together 5 types of programs that allow migrants to enter Australia: * Skilled migration (GSM) * Business People * Family Members * Humanitarian Entrants or Refugees * Employer Sponsored
Over the past 20 years migration and natural increase have both contributed equally to population growth, but in 2006 when Kevin Rudd was elected as prime minister the migration levels climbed to 66%, Mr Rudd supports a bigger Australia and the overseas migration levels have continued to rise since his resignation, this is a factor as to why the population has increased so rapidly in such a short space of time.
Another contributing factor to the growth of Australia’s population is the baby bonus and paid parental leave, this encourages increase and although it has been falling with the fertility rate at 1.8% and the replacement rate at 2.1%, it has started to climb again. With such low fertility rates, this creates a higher ageing population.
Australia’s Population Structure has faced one of its most significant challenges recently, an ageing population; over the past 20 years our median age has increased from 31.8 years to 36.9 years, according the ABS. By 2056 our median age will sit between 41.9 years and 45.2 years. This is until the government introduced the baby bonus, with the benefits of paid parental leave and $5000 to cover the costs of welcoming a new baby into the world; the government has encouraged people to have more children.
There are two reasons for our ageing population: low fertility rates and increased life expectancy.
An ageing population can slow down economic growth. As the population of traditional working age falls, the rate of labour force participation is also projected to fall. The labour participation rate is expected to fall to less than 61% by 2050, in comparison to 65% today and within the next few years, immigration will be the only net labour force growth in Australia. Another problem is the government’s plan for people to work past the traditional retirement age, a new policy was introduced ‘compulsory superannuation ’, this entitles every working Australian to invest in an industry super fund to reduce the reliance on the pension.
Australia’s average population density is 2.7 people per square kilometre, however the population is not evenly distributed throughout the nation; 68% of Australians live in one of