Tasmania’s population projections are set to take a hit as pandemic border closures negatively impact state growth. The latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) show population projections for Tasmania fall short of the identified target of 650,000 people by 2050. ABS population projections list 578,914 as the projected figure for Tasmania’s population by 2050 using the […]
Tasmania’s population projections are set to take a hit as pandemic border closures negatively impact state growth.
The latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) show population projections for Tasmania fall short of the identified target of 650,000 people by 2050.
ABS population projections list 578,914 as the projected figure for Tasmania’s population by 2050 using the ‘medium series’ projections.
University of Tasmania data analyst, Jacqueline De Vries, said the impacts of COVID-19 would most likely mean the target population goal won’t be reached.
In the best-case scenario projection, using the ‘high series’, ABS predicts Tasmania would exceed its target goal and hit 673,592 people by 2050.
De Vries said those figures need to be completely ignored now.
“That scenario is not going to happen,” she said.
Most of Tasmania’s population increase in the last ten years has been from overseas migration, De Vries said.
Ms De Vries said it was more realistic to look at the ‘low series’ projections now.
The ABS ‘low series’ projections show a decline in population, predicting just 500, 413 people in the state by 2050.
The border restrictions on overseas migration mean Tasmania will be more reliant on interstate migration, retaining young people, and natural increase (births) for population growth and economic recovery.
“My predictions would be that it (Tasmania) will become more attractive to interstate people,” De Vries said.
“Realestate.com [realestate.com.au], they’ve had a huge amount of searches for regional areas across Australia, including places like Launceston and the northwest coast,” she said.
Recent interstate arrivals, Pauline Denney and Roy Wilson, moved to Tasmania from Coalcliff, New South Wales, to enjoy a more relaxed lifestyle and escape the heat.
“It was getting far too hot in summer…it was just stifling, and we just thought this is ridiculous,” Wilson said.
Wilson said Coalcliff was just a sleepy town when they first moved there 23 years ago but has become a crowded weekend swimming spot.
“When we left, it actually got to the point where weekends, the place was just inundated from Western Sydney because it was so hot out there,” he said.
Denney and Wilson moved to Boat Harbour in the northwest of the state which has a population of around 270 people.
Website developer, Hamish Palmer, moved to Tasmania from The Whitsundays in 2011, with his wife, Georgie.
Affordability, better facilities, and proximity to family were all pull factors for Palmer.
Palmer is originally from New Zealand and had considered returning home, but Tasmania was a more appealing option.
“The other thing was the price of groceries in Auckland,” he said.
“Everything stacked up.
“Back then a basic house in Auckland, $600 a week, now it’s closer to $800, $900 a week.”
The pandemic has also affirmed Mr Palmer’s decision to call Tasmania home.
“I’m happy that we’re here,” he said.
Administration manager for ‘Ten Days on the Island’, Stephanie Finn, moved to the northwest coast of Tasmania from Sydney in 2006.
“I just wanted a complete change from the city lifestyle,” she said.
Ms Finn said she fell in love with Tasmania after visiting for the first time in 1984.
“It felt like home for me…I particularly loved just the space and the beauty of the hills going down to the water,” she said.
“I was actually surprised at how quickly you could become part of the local community, which was really lovely.
“I did enjoy that wherever you went, you would bump into people that you knew, that was that real sense of belonging to the local community.”
There may be more movement into the state as borders begin to open.‘That’s it! I’m moving to Tassie!!’ is a Facebook group with more than 14,000 members. The group predominantly consists of ‘mainlanders’ seeking logistical advice and support to get to Tasmania.
A study released at the start of 2020 show lifestyle and climate as major motivators for people migrating into Tasmania from interstate as part of an overall “…quest for a better way of life.”
De Vries said projections will need to be recalibrated after next year’s census.
“It’ll be really interesting to track the movements across Australia and the movements in,” she said.
Tasmania has the third smallest population in Australia after the Australian Capital Territory and the Northern Territory, and is the most temperate state in Australia.
Tasmania Talks-Population and Migration
Source: Tasmanian Times https://www.tasmaniantimes.com/2020/11/tasmania-population-projection-decline/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=tasmania-population-projection-decline