SYDNEY – India has become the leading source of permanent migrants to Australia for the first time, ahead of China, a government report showed Monday.
Reflecting the growing prominence of Asia to Australia, seven of the top 10 source countries during 2011-12 were from the region, Australia’s Migration Trends study showed.
“Between 1996 and 2011, Australia’s overseas-born population grew by more than 40 percent to reach 6 million,” said Immigration Minister Brendan O’Connor. “This was more than double the rate for the Australian-born population and is essential in addressing the demographic challenges of an aging population. With the government’s strong emphasis on skilled migration, this sort of growth is also crucial to ensuring depth in Australia’s labor force.”
The number of permanent migrants from India was 29,018 in 2011-2012, up 12.7 percent on the previous year.
China was No. 2 as visa places fell from 29,546 to 25,509.