Private capital investment in the services sector is set to overtake investment in the mining and resources sector in 2017. This outcome has an autocorrelation with continuing historically high levels of population growth. This means service sector jobs growth in health, retail, finance, property, education and tourism. Population driven jobs growth is likely to be strong. At 30 June 2013, Australia's estimated resident population (ERP) was 23.1 million, an increase of 1.9 million people (8.9%) since 30 June 2008.
In 2013, just under one-third (32%) of Australia's population resided in New South Wales, while one-quarter (25%) lived in Victoria.
The population grew in each of Australia's states and territories between 2008 and 2013, with the largest increases in the country's three most populous states. Victoria had the greatest growth (up by 483,000 people), followed by New South Wales (466,900) and Queensland (437,300). Western Australia had the fastest growth, increasing by 16%, followed by Queensland (10%), the Australian Capital Territory and the Northern Territory (both up by 9.5%). Tasmania had both the smallest and slowest growth, increasing by 14,600 people or 2.9%.
In 2013, just over one fifth of Australia's population lived within Greater Sydney, while just under one fifth lived in Greater Melbourne. Greater Melbourne had the largest population growth of any capital city between 2008 and 2013, gaining 416,500 people. Greater Perth grew by 17%, which was the fastest growth of all capital cities in Australia. Greater Hobart experienced both the smallest (8,800 people) and slowest (4.2%) growth.
For Australia this means a renewed focus in the Eastern Seaboard Megalopolis for the medium term. The total population of greater Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane is forecast by MacroPlan to increase by 4 to 5 million people in the next 20 years to 2035. This suggests that an Eastern Seaboard Strategy Plan to coordinate rail, airports and ports is needed. For example this could be the time to open the Sydney-Canberra corridor. This level would be the fastest total increase in this population in our history. For the property and development industries the next 20 years presents itself as a purple patch for opportunities - interest rate willing. MacroPlan research suggests a cyclical peak in the next 5 years based on historic cycle lengths. Clearly the RBA is currently trying to mitigate cyclical peaks and troughs with its tough talking in relation to housing prices. Is this the time for the property industry to step up and collaborate to mitigate unsustainable housing price increase? Or is this a pipe dream?