The respective capital cities accounted for a remarkable 92 per cent of population growth in Victoria, 92 per cent in Tasmania, 93 per cent in South Australia, and an incredible 94 per cent in Western Australia.
Australia is centralising
By contrast regional population growth has slowed to just +0.7 per cent, and virtually all of this growth was seen in inner regional areas, with outer regional and remote areas witnessing flat or falling populations in aggregate.
In short, Australia is centralising.
The story is largely one of stagnation rather than anything more dramatic than that.
The population of the Creswick-Daylesford-Ballan region increased by one (1) in financial year 2015. Maryborough-Pyrenees saw its population fall by one.
The entire Shepparton region, once a hub for robust employment and population growth, increased by 91 heads. The total population of Mildura fell by 3 (three), thereby contributing ever so slightly to an overall population decline of 1,030 or -0.7 per cent in North West Victoria.
Meanwhile the Warrnambool and South West region saw its population decline by 822 or -0.7 per cent, and Deakin University is considering closing its local university campus, a potentially devastating blow for regional students and the local community (especially given that population increase for the remainder of the decade is projected to be driven largely by international students).
Queensland coast thrives
Only one state records reasonable population growth of +1.0 per cent in its regions, that being Queensland (compared with +0.8 per cent in New South Wales, and +0.6 per cent in Victoria, while in the regional Northern Territory population growth was negative).
While population growth rates remain furiously strong in the largest capital cities, the slowdown continues in most regional locations.