Migrants in Australia favour life in its two biggest cities

Migrants in Australia favour life in its two biggest cities

It is the lifestyle in Australia that attracts hundreds of thousands to emigrate every year but it seems that most of them also like the big lights of the city.

Those from overseas are more likely to live in major urban areas, with half of all migrants living in Sydney or Melbourne according to the latest Australian Social Trends (AST) data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS.)

‘We found that the suburbs with the highest proportion of people born overseas included Haymarket in Sydney, Clayton in Melbourne, Robertson in Brisbane, Regency Park in Adelaide, and Northbridge in Perth,’ she explained.

Suburbs near universities also have high proportions of migrants. These include suburbs like Clayton in Melbourne where 70% are from overseas, Robertson in Brisbane with 62%, Bentley and Crawley in Perth both also with 62%, Bedford Park in Adelaide with 49%, and Acton in Canberra with 57%.

In some cities, new or redeveloped suburbs have attracted large numbers of migrants, such as Wolli Creek in Sydney with 68%, Jindalee in Perth with 62%, and Franklin in Canberra with 44%.

Other suburbs are significant areas of migrant settlement due to historical associations, such as Cabramatta in Sydney at 68% and St Albans in Melbourne at 62%. These suburbs have relatively large populations of second generation migrants in addition to new arrivals.

The largest migrant group in Australia are people born in the United Kingdom, followed by people born in New Zealand, China and India. This has changed from 2001 when the largest migrant groups were from UK, New Zealand, Italy and Vietnam.

‘In Sydney, two in five residents of Harris Park were born in India, and Hurstville had the highest proportion of people born in China. In Melbourne, one in four people living in Sunshine North was born in Vietnam, and in Perth, two in five residents of Jindalee were born in the UK,’ said Hunt.

The extent to which migrants settled in urban areas differs by their country of birth. In 2011, some of the most urbanised population groups in Australia were migrants born in Somalia, Lebanon, Macau, and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. Migrants born in nations like China, Vietnam, Greece and India were also highly urbanised with over 90% living in cities.

By contrast, migrants from New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Germany and the Netherlands tended to be less concentrated in major urban areas. They were still more likely, however, to live in a major urban area than people born in Australia.

Within urban areas, migrants in Australia tended to live in Australia’s two largest cities, a trend seen in Australia since the late 1940s. In the 2011 Census, just under half of all migrants in Australia lived in either Sydney or Melbourne, with 1.4 million residents of Sydney and 1.2 million residents of Melbourne being born overseas. Perth had the third largest migrant population in Australia at 568,000 people.