An overlooked aspect of the Pacific nation’s economic outperformance has been the ability to attract a quarter of a million migrants every year, underpinning demand for everything from homes to cars, schools and hospitals.
“Provided population growth is planned for by government, it represents power to the economy,” said Craig James, chief economist at stockbroker and fund manger CommSec. “Businesses are in business because they want to grow and solid population growth assists in that.”
New South Wales, the country’s most populous state, plans to splurge A$60 billion ($55 billion) on infrastructure in just the next four years to meet growing demand.
For sure, having more people is hardly a panacea and clearly entails all sorts of environmental challenges. But again Australia is better placed than many to cope.