Population sees fastest rise since 1988


June 24, 2008

A mini baby boom and high immigration has seen Australia record its fastest population increase in two decades, statistics show.

In 2007, the population grew by 1.6 per cent, or 331,900 people, pushing past the 21 million mark, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) says.

It was the most rapid rise since 1988.

The national birthrate increased from 1.8 babies per woman in 2006 to 1.9.

The Australian National University's head demographer, Professor Peter Macdonald, said the baby bonus introduced by the Howard government had helped achieve the increase, but not directly because of the financial incentive.