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NSW population projection scenarios

Ten ‘what if?’ scenarios have been produced to illustrate what happens to the population when different specific levels of births, deaths, or migration are used to develop the projections.  These scenarios can be used to create high and low growth population projection series, where all assumptions changed to create high or low growth.  

Purpose of scenarios

Future levels of births, deaths and migration cannot be predicted with high levels of accuracy. The main 2016 population projections are based on assumptions that are based on our best assessment of likely future trends. The high and low projection series and the suite of scenarios show a range of possible population futures. 

 

The projection scenarios show users what would happen if there were changes to current trends. The high and low series should not be interpreted as an upper and lower bound for potential population growth. They are designed to explore a plausible range of future population changes.  

 

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The range shows the high and low series and highlights the main projection series. The main projection series is that which the Department provides for its reporting responsibilities. All projection scenarios, except for zero migration, lie between the high and low population projections.



High projection series assumes:

  • The Total Fertility Rate (TFR) rises to 2.12 births per woman by 2036
  • Life expectancy at birth rises to 90.6 years for females, and to 87.3 years for males, by 2036
  • Net Interstate Migration (NIM) drops to -12,000 per annum by 2021 and held at the same level to 2036
  • Net Overseas Migration (NOM) rises to 81,150 per annum by 2036.

Low projection series assumed:

  • The TFR rises to 1.84 births per woman by 2036
  • Life expectancy at birth rises to 86.9 years for females, and to 83.3 years for males, by 2036
  • NIM drops to -22,000 per annum by 2021 and held at the same level to 2036
  • NOM rises to 58,700 per annum by 2036.

The ten projection scenarios change a single assumption at a time (either births, deaths, overseas migration, or interstate migration). All the other assumptions remain the same as those used in the main 2016 population projections. The following scenarios are available:

  • Low fertility (the TFR rises to 1.84 births per woman by 2036, all other assumptions are those used in the main 2016 projection)
  • High fertility (the TFR rises to 2.12 births per woman by 2036, all other assumptions are those used in the main 2016 projection)
  • Low life expectancy (life expectancy at birth rises to 86.9 years for females, and to 83.3 years for males, by 2036, all other assumptions are those used in the main 2016 projection)
  • High life expectancy (life expectancy at birth rises to 90.6 years for females, and to 87.3years for males, by 2036, all other assumptions are those used in the main 2016 projection)
  • Low NOM (NOM rises to 58,700 per annum by 2036, all other assumptions are those used in the main 2016 projection)
  • High NOM (NOM rises to 81,150 per annum by 2036, all other assumptions are those used in the main 2016 projection)
  • Low NIM (NIM drops to -22,000 per annum by 2021 and held at the same level to 2036, all other assumptions are those used in the main 2016 projection)
  • High NIM (NIM drops to -12,000 per annum by 2021 and held at the same level to 2036, all other assumptions are those used in the main 2016 projection)
  • Zero NOM (NOM set at zero, all other assumptions are those used in the main 2016 projection) Zero NOM or NIM (NOM and NIM set at zero, all other assumptions are those used in the main 2016 projection.

The two excel files below have the NSW population projections for the high and low series, and the 10 scenarios.  The tabs in each file show the impact of different assumptions on population size, growth rates, the drivers of population change and the population age profile.  

The next two excel files for the 10 planning regions show the impact of the different assumptions on the total population.  The tab for each region shows the population projection scenario or series outputs. 

The file below shows the population projections for each local government area (LGA) based on assumptions for the high and low series.  


Page last updated: 23/01/2017