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Immigration and Population Growth

Immigration and Population Growth

Migration’s vital role. AUSTRALIA, like many developed countries, has an ageing population. Over the next 40 years, the proportion of working-age people in Australia is projected to fall, with only 2.7 people of working age to support each Australian aged over 65 by 2050. This compares with five working people today and 7.5 in 1970.

Some developed countries face an ageing crisis. Slow rates of growth in demand and falling ratios of workers to age pensioners are having significant effects on countries such as Japan, Italy and Greece. Australia is fortunate that successive governments have made hard decisions to deal with Australia’s ageing population that have put us in a strong position relative to the rest of the developed world.

‘Big Australia’ has its advantages if we can improve resource management. Size does matter – as an enabler, writes Paul Kerin

KEVIN Rudd wanted a ”Big Australia”. Julia Gillard doesn’t. For once, I agree with Rudd. Big Australia is in the national interest – if we improve management of our shared resources.

What Rudd called Big Australia – a 35.9 million population by 2050 – actually isn’t very big. One ”big” absolute number that’s 40 years away shouldn’t scare us. That number came from Treasury’s recent third Intergenerational Report. Due to the magic of compounding, the latest report’s extra 0.4 percentage-point annual growth generates what seems like a much bigger 2050 number.

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