Last year, over 7.6-million people living in Australia were born overseas, which equates to 30 percent of the overall population.
This is an increase on the 28 percent born elsewhere in 2015, and the 27 percent in 2010.
According to the new data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, which measures population statistics as at June 2020, people born in England continue to be the largest segment of migrants.
“Australia’s population encompasses migrants born in nearly every country worldwide, highlighting our culturally diverse society,” said ABS Director of Migration Statistics, Jenny Dobak.
Nearly a million migrants born in England
“People born in England continue to be the largest group of overseas-born residents, accounting for 980,000 people. Those born in India became the second largest group in 2020 with 721,000 people,” she said.
Other nations in the top 10 for supplying migrants include China (651 000 people); Philippines (310,000); Vietnam (270,000); South Africa (200,000) and Italy (178,000).
In addition, trans-Tasman neighbour New Zealand supplied 565,000 migrants to Australia.
In the year to 30 June 2020, preliminary migration estimates recorded that 510,000 people arrived to live in Australia, while 315,000 people left Australia to live overseas, the most departures ever recorded, the ABS said.
There were a record 99,000 Australian citizens returning after living overseas in 2019-20, the greatest number of returns ever recorded. In the same year, over 61,000 Australians emigrated, a decline of 29 per cent from one year earlier. These changes likely reflect impacts from Covid-19.
More people arrive in Australia than leave
Additionally, 22,000 New Zealand citizens moved to Australia to live in the year ending 30 June 2020. However, in the same year, 21,000 New Zealanders departed Australia to live overseas.
“Historically, more people immigrate to, than emigrate from, Australia thereby adding to the growth of the national population,” the ABS said in its report.
“The various waves of migrants from numerous countries over time have had an important effect on the diversity of Australia’s population.
“High levels of immigration in the years before 1891 resulted in 32% of the population enumerated as overseas-born in the first country-wide census in 1891. In 2020, the proportion of Australia’s population born overseas was 30%.”