Census 2016: Milestone Passed as Australia Becomes more Asian, less European

Australians born of Australian parents will soon be a minority. 

The census shows Australia reached a “tipping point” in 2016 where only slightly more than half its residents had two Australian-born parents.

The long-term low of 50.7 per cent is a step down from 54 per cent in 2011 and 57 per cent in 2006.

More than a quarter of Australia’s population in 2016 was born overseas (26.3 per cent, up from 24.6 per cent) and for the first time since colonisation, most of the overseas-born came from Asia rather than Europe.

China, India, the Philippines, Vietnam and Malaysia now account for more foreign-born residents than England, New Zealand and mainland Europe.

Asian immigrants are typically much younger than European immigrants, meaning that the switch to Asian immigrants is helping slow down the ageing of the population.

Only 23.5 per cent of residents identified their ancestry as Australian, down from 29 per cent in 2006. A quarter of us, 25 per cent, described themselves as English.

While English remains Australia’s most used language, it is becoming less common, with 72.7 per cent of residents reporting they spoke only English at home, down from 76.8 per cent in 2011.

Mandarin is spoken by 2.2 per cent of Australians, up from 1.6 per cent, and Arabic by 1.4 per cent, up from 1.3 per cent. Vietnamese…

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