Saturday, March 29, 2014

Victoria steals our lunch again!

The ABS released updated population estimates and the cosmopolitan café culture in Melbourne continues to steal our lunch eh!

Interstate migration was once the main driver of population growth in Queensland but has continued to lag recently. Gene Tunny at Queensland Economy Watch has a couple of good posts on this:

Interstate migration to Qld remains low, probably reflecting sluggish labour market

Queenslanders moving to Victoria

There is an excellent graph from Gene there on population movements between Victoria and Queensland which is now actually net negative on these most recent numbers. Victoria, along with WA, is now the beneficiary of net interstate migration.

There was an explosion of migration from Victoria in the early 1990's "recession we had to have" when the Victorian economy was hammered and refugees took to the roads in caravans with their scant remaining possessions. Many ended up in FNQ economically insulated by capital inflow from the then Japan bubble.

Anyway, this is my chart of sources of annual Queensland population growth rolling quarterly demonstrating the decline in interstate component:

The significant growth of overseas net migration reflects a national trend rather than anything specific to Queensland. There are also some similar trends here with recent posts on where short term visitors to Australia spend their most time.

The significance of cultural attractions for both tourism and a resident population should not be lost particularly in context of some of the appalling redneck levels of local debate around just that in Cairns in recent years on the value of cultural investment.

However the team at Macrobusiness also continue to raise concerns around the Melbourne economic model as they have done for some time: Melbourne's population Ponzi means it must grow


  1. Thanks Mark. Good point about the significance of cultural attractions. Certainly part of the mix of things that attract people, along with employment/business opportunities and favourable climate.

  2. Ya know. Maybe some research would be worthwhile into whether the Victorian tourism and interstate migration story overlap?