Box 5b: Interstate Arrivals and Departures
While Tasmanian's interstate leavers typically outnumber arrivals, resulting in net interstate loss, the flows in each direction have a significant (positive) impact on the state's economy. For example, in the June 2007-08 year, the total gain of 791 concealed the fact that 12,012 people left the state and 12,803 arrived, a total of 24,815 movements. When the number of sales, purchases or rentals of property (and of many other goods and services) that these 24,815 movements would have generated is considered, it can be seen that net migration numbers tell only part of the story. A recent study undertaken for Tasmania's Demographic Change Advisory Council (DCAC) by myself and Dr Peter Wilde of the School of Geography and Environmental Studies (University of Tasmania) found that in the five years 2001-2006 a minimum 398,000 people either moved from, to, or within Tasmania - and that is not counting those who moved to or from overseas, within their LGA, or moved somewhere and then back again during the period.
Tasmania's highest number of interstate movements (30,135) occurred in the 2002-03 year, when 14,071 persons moved to an interstate destination, and 16,064 arrived. The net gain of 1,993 that these movements generated was widely hailed, but not as much as the net gain of the following year (2,574) which reflected slightly fewer (29,948) overall movements. The greater net gain was of course of considerable importance to Tasmania, but so too were the number of movements that received almost no media, business or political attention.
Tasmania's significant population churning is not new, having been identified as the second highest for the Australian states by the Australian Bureau of Statistics some years ago (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 1999. Migration 1997-98. Catalogue 3412.0: 32)