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About 20 Million Australians

FinDem's News article on 27 May 2002 projected that the ABS Population Clock (www.abs.gov.au) would show Australia's population at 20 million on 12 December 2002. Already we are seeing other demographers pitch in with their views on when we are at 20 million with estimates from Bernard Salt (www.thebigshift.com.au) quoted in the Weekend Australian that 20 million was reached at 4.24 a.m. on Friday.

Like stores celebrating their 1 millionth customer, it's a bit harder to be sure of when these targets are reached but nevertheless 20 million is a milestone worth publicising. Problems in accurate checks on our total population are:

* Undercount from the 2001 census is estimated at 1.8% or 360,000.

* Immigration head counts have been out of line (by about 20,000 the ABS estimates) for about two years following processing delays surrounding the time of the Sydney Olympics in 2000.

* Unauthorised arrivals in this country run at over 1,000 per year.

Posted Sunday, 19 October 2003

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