Census Results Show Our Changes And Diversity

18:39' 29-06-2017
The results of the latest national Census, taken last year and released by the Bureau of Statistics on 27 June, reveal Australia is a fast changing, ever-expanding, culturally diverse nation.

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    Photo: lecourrieraustralien.com

    Two thirds (67%) of Australia's 23,401,892 people were born in Australia. Nearly half were either born overseas or had at least one parent who was born overseas.

    England and New Zealand remain the next most common countries of birth after Australia, followed by China and then India. This “Top 5” is the same as in the previous Census, taken in 2011.

    The proportion of people born in China and India both increased by about 25%. NZ-born people stayed steady, with a slight increase of just over 35,000 people. Those born in Australia or the UK decreased slightly, by 4% and 7% of the 2011 populations respectively.

    Of the 6,163,667 people born overseas, nearly one in five (18%) had arrived since the start of 2012, and 83% of them lived in a capital city. Sydney had the largest overseas-born population.

    Over 300 separate languages are spoken in Australian homes. The most common is English, with more than one-fifth (21%) of Australians speaking a language other than English at home. The next most common languages are Mandarin, Arabic, Cantonese, and Vietnamese, in that order.

    Although the total number of languages was much the same in 2011, the top five languages spoken have changed. English and Mandarin still top the list, but Arabic and Cantonese have moved upwards, from 4th and 5th place respectively to 3rd and 4th place. Italian, which was 3rd in 2011, has fallen from the list, and Vietnamese has taken the 5th position.

    Statistics on religious belief have attracted attention in this Census, with the choice “No Religion” rising from 22% in 2011 to nearly a third (30%). Christianity remains the most commonly reported religion, at 52.1%. However, the next most common, Islam and Buddhism, are respectively 2.6% and 2.4%. Just over 9% declined to answer the religion question.

    Australian Statistician David W. Kalisch said the 2016 Census had a response rate of 95.1%, and was completed online by 63% of people, despite the access problems which afflicted it at the time.

    The total population has increased by 8.8% since 2011. NSW has the largest population, with nearly 7.5 million people. Victoria is second largest, with nearly 6 million.

    Census data is available free online at www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/mf/2071.0.

    Phung L



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Keywords: australiabureau of statisticsculturally diverse nation

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