This is in addition to the WA regions leading the way for the nation in population growth.
According to a Regional Australia Institute report, promoting the benefits of a regional lifestyle will be the key to ensuring the trend continues as the mining industry changes gear.
Pathways to Settlement: Population mobility in regional WA found growth in regional towns and cities had been unprecedented.
‘Nine out of the top 10 fastest growing populations in Australia were located in regional WA during the peak of the mining boom from 2006 to 2011,’ RAI policy and research general manager Jack Archer said.
Four key drivers of population change in regional WA were:
– Resource industry labour demand driving growth in the mining regions;
– Demand for affordable housing and lifestyle properties extending peri-urban sprawl into the regions close to Perth;
– A new level of sea-change, fuelled by increasing numbers of retirees and the development of fly-in-fly-out commuter routes; and
– Structural adjustment in inland, non-mining, agricultural areas reducing labour demand and contributing to population decline in some areas.
‘What we are seeing now is a clear change in the number one driver ” resource industry labour demand,’ Mr Archer said.
‘Other growth drivers will now need to take up the slack if we are to maintain the momentum in population change.
‘Employment, access to education, technology and the amenities of regional towns and cities are crucial to future momentum.’
The settlement pathways were 20 per cent from overseas, 20 per cent from interstate, 38 per cent moved from Perth and 22 per cent moved from other regions within WA.