National, state and territory population data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics for the September quarter, 2020 show that Queensland experienced the greatest quarterly as well as annual population growth in the nation in both absolute and relative terms.
Over the quarter, net interstate migration into Queensland led the nation with a population increase of 8,661 persons (+0.17%) comprised of positive net internal migration of 7,237, a natural increase (births less deaths) of 7,120 persons, which was offset by a negative net overseas net migration (arrivals less departures) of -5,696 persons.
The yearly statistics to September show a similar story, with Queensland's population growth of 68,175 (+1.33%) the highest in the nation in both absolute and relative terms.
Again, positive net interstate migration to Queensland of 28,571 persons was a key driver of population growth with the state receiving an influx of outbound residents from the south-eastern seaboard states in particular, where New South Wales registered negative net interstate migration of -20,388 persons and Victoria -3,536 persons over the year to September.
While quarterly net interstate migration into Queensland during September is above the historical state average of 5,914 persons from June 1981 to September 2020, it is important to acknowledge that recent levels of net internal migration into the state is not as strong as during past periods including between the late 1980s and mid 1990s as well as more recently in the beginning to mid 2000s.
Nevertheless, above average population growth is a welcome sign for the state economy with a simple linear regression line showing population has a strong positive association with economic output, with every additional person being associated with a $116,880 increase in gross state product.