Box 9a: Structural Ageing (Numbers)
The accompanying graph shows projected numerical change by age between 2008 and 2018, and 2008 and 2028, according to the ABS Series B assumptions. If Tasmania experiences consistent annual net migration gains of around 940 and a birth rate of 2.08 (the Series B assumptions), along with continued but slowing inprovements in life expectancy, between now and 2018 the total population will grow by around 6.7 per cent (33,573 people). However virtually all of that growth will occur at the older ages. At ages 65+ the increase will be in the vicinity of 38 per cent, while for all other age groups combined it will be 1.2 per cent. Similarly between 2008 and 2028, the Series B assumptions indicate total population growth of some 11.8 per cent (58,557 people); at age 65+ this will be 78 per cent, while for all other age groups combined will be zero.
Of particular note is that over the next decade (2008-2018) the projections indicate growth at age 85+ years of some 3,053 persons, and over the next two decades (2008-2028) of some 7,231 persons. All age groups 62-76 years will grow by between 1,000 and 2,000 each over the period 2008-2018, while between 2008 and 2028 growth ranging between 1,300 and 3,000 will occur for all age groups 63 and over. By contrast declines are projected for most other age groups, the only exceptions being age 2-11 (reflecting the impact of the birth rate assumption) and mid-20's to mid-30's (reflecting the impact of the positive migration assumptions).
The outcome of these structural shifts will see those aged 65+ years increase from their current 15.0 per cent share of the total population, to around 27 per cent by 2056 (Series B). This proportion will continue to grow until well into the second half of the century - it will only begin to decline when the large baby boom 'echo' cohorts born around 1970 (now around 35 years of age) reach very old age (see also Box 16).