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Population issues: impact of 2000-2001 immigration intake.

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Philip Ruddock MP    Minister for Immigration and Multicultural Affairs    Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Reconciliation

Population Issues: Impact of

2000-2001 Immigration Intake  

MPS 037/2000 

The 6,000 increase in the planning level for the Migration (non-Humanitarian) Program may raise Australia's projected population for the Year 2050 by up to 0.5 million if maintained for the next 50 years, the Minister for Immigration and Multicultural Affairs, Mr Philip Ruddock announced.

Depending on the assumptions used, this would mean that Australia's population may be closer to 24 million than 23 million by 2050 although the population growth rate would still be approaching zero given Australia's below replacement and declining fertility rate.

The increased immigration intake would have only a very marginal impact on the projected ageing of Australia's population.

The Minister emphasised, however, that the Government would only maintain this higher level of immigration if key skill shortages such as those in the IT Industry persist and Australia continues to be able to attract sufficient numbers of young migrants with strong English language and appropriate occupational skills.

Mr Ruddock said the Government continued to be concerned about achieving a better dispersal of the intake and for this reason he said he would continue to promote and enhance the State-Specific Migration Mechanisms that are available for use by state/territory governments, employers and regional authorities.

"I am also aware of concerns about the impact of population growth on the environment, particularly in the Sydney region", the Minister said.

Whilst increased use of State-Specific Migration Mechanisms should help to reduce population growth pressures on Sydney, the Minister said that it is equally important to better understand the nature of the impact of population growth on the environment. 

"It is for this reason that I have commissioned the CSIRO to undertake further research in this area," Mr Ruddock said.

The Government will ensure that a wide a range of information on population issues continues to be made available to allow informed discussion and decision making in both the public and private sectors.

3 April 2000 Media Enquiries: Steve Ingram 0419 278 715 

Related Announcements

MPS 034/2000 - 2000-2001 Migration (Non-Humanitarian) Program MPS 035/2000 - Humanitarian Intake for 2000-2001 MPS 036/2000 - 4,000 Place Contingency Reserve for Migration of Parents MPS 038/2000 - Migration Occupations in Demand List