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.id insight Newsletter
April 2019 Edition

"The roads are clogged; the buses and trains are full. The schools are taking no more enrolments. I hear what you are saying. I hear you loud and clear."

- Scott Morrison, Australia’s Prime Minister, November 2018

In March, the Australian Prime Minister announced a trimming of the permanent migration program from the established figure of 190,000 per year to 160,000.

The PM has also proposed to entice migrants to regional areas.

While a population plan is a good idea, this is not much of a plan.

The Australian Overseas migration story in more complex than that what the PM is suggesting. The important roles that temporary migrants play in the Australian economy changes the PM’s picture considerably.

There are the Kiwis and temporary workers and their families who provide important labour resources, the students who drive a multi-billion-dollar education industry, and the backpackers who drive a tourist dollar as well as providing rural labour.

You may think of these people as temporary visitors, but many are counted in our population.

When I wrote this column on Monday, my next paragraph said;

Include these economically-important temporary migrants and the net overseas migration (NOM) figure for Australia will remain between 220,000-240,000 places per year.

Now, with the release of the Treasury budget papers Tuesday night, we see the actual net overseas migration figure forecast for 2019 is 271,700 places.

But really, that's beside the point.

The thing is, trimming of the Permanent Migration program policy will have a negligible impact at the local level. It will not have an impact on school enrolments, crowded public transport or road congestion. Innovative planning and bold investments in infrastructure are required for that.

Author Ivan

Urban economics

How has your local economy fared in recent years?

Economic profiling pic


Two years is a long time in economic development at the local government level.

.id economist, Keenan Jackson, has prepared this analysis with interactive charts for every local government area in Australia, showing you how your local economy has changed in recent years and what factors are having the biggest impact.


Local area demographics

Demographic profiles for small towns and localities

Locality snapshots-1


Glenn introduces Locality Snapshots – a new feature in our community profiles to give you localised demographic data for small towns that are usually bundled in with larger regional centres. 


Population Policy

The PM's Population policy: a NOM event

Migration pic


With Tuesday night’s budget, the Treasury published forecast assumptions about Net Overseas Migration (NOM) – the net effect of people coming to and leaving Australia.

These figures contrast starkly with the Government’s recent ‘tough on migration’ stance when they announced their population policy in March.

We thought it was a good opportunity to look at who would be affected if the government did introduce a policy that reduced the number of visas available for people who want to come to Australia.


Population Growth

A map of the fastest-growing cities in Australia



With the release of the latest population figures from the ABS last month, Glenn gives us the highlights, including a map showing which local government areas are most affected by population changes and a summary of the fastest growing areas, as well as places in population decline.


Community focus

Who are Australia's volunteers?

hands up


Nearly one-in-five people volunteered in the 12 months prior to the 2016 Census.

In this piece, Glenn shares his 2019 update to the Australian volunteering story, highlighting the age groups that are most likely to volunteer, the difference between metropolitan and regional areas, and the local government areas with the highest rates of volunteering in Australia.


In case you missed it

A new online tool to help council planning teams deliver affordable housing



If you missed it last month, we announced our new online tool to help strategic planning and community engagement teams plan and advocate for affordable housing in their community.

You can see a live example of the tool for the City of Whittlesea, or read Georgia's blog sharing the back-story of our decision to build a housing tool, after hearing the frustrations council planning teams encountered when preparing an evidence base for their housing and community engagement strategies.

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