Proportion of older Australians continues to rise

The proportion of Australia’s population aged 65 and over continued to rise in 2018, with Tasmania home to the country’s oldest population.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, a range of factors contributed to the ageing trend.

ABS Demography Director Anthony Grubb said in the 20 years to 2018, the proportion of Australia’s working age population remained stable at about two-thirds of the total, while the proportion of people aged 65 and over rose from 12.2 percent to 15.7 percent.

At the same time, the proportion of people aged under 15 dropped from 21 percent to 18.8 percent.

Mr Grubb said several drivers were responsible for Australia’s ageing population. More of the Baby Boomer cohort were reaching 65 and life expectancy was increasing. This had occurred while low fertility rates resulted in fewer children.

The median age of Tasmanians was the oldest at 42, while Northern Territorians were the youngest at 33.

Australia’s population grew by 390,500 in the year ending 30 June 2018, to reach 24.9 million. New South Wales had the largest population at just under 7.99 million, while Victoria recorded the fastest growth of 2.2 percent to 6.46 million.

Net overseas migration added 236,700 people to the nation’s population and accounted for 61 percent of total growth. Natural increase contributed 153,800 additional people, the net result of 314,800 births and 161,000 deaths.

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