New data shows Australians fleeing Sydney, Melbourne as Brisbane, Perth gain residents

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Melbourne and Sydney recorded a net loss of more than 8000 people each during the first quarter of 2021. Picture: Jason EdwardsSource:News Corp Australia

The populations of Sydney and Melbourne fell by more than 8000 people in the March quarter as Brisbane and Perth boosted their numbers.

Internal migration figures, released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics on Tuesday, revealed Brisbane gained the most people through net internal migration (+3300), while Melbourne lost the most (-8300) in the March 2021 quarter.

Melbourne’s net loss was closely followed by Sydney (-8200).

Of the net gain to Brisbane, 710 people relocated from other parts of Queensland, while 2600 arrived from around the country.

A net loss of 11,800 people from Australia’s capital cities through internal migration was recorded in the first three months of the year, the most significant amount in 20 years.

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More people left Sydney in the March quarter than came to live there. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Damian ShawSource:News Corp Australia

“This was the largest net loss on record since the series started in 2001, surpassing the previous record net loss set in the September 2020 quarter (-11,200),” the ABS report stated.

“The net loss was the result of 54,400 arrivals (down from 55,400 in the December 2020 quarter) and 66,300 departures (up slightly from 66,000) to non-capital city areas.”

Internal migration by capital city, March 2021:

  • Sydney: Arrivals: 20,270; departures: 28,439; net: -8169
  • Melbourne: Arrivals: 20,267; departures: 28,540; net: -8273
  • Brisbane: Arrivals: 23,373; departures: 19,999; net: 3274
  • Adelaide: Arrivals: 8239; departures: 8180; net: 59
  • Perth: Arrivals: 11,662; departures: 10,108; net: 1554
  • Hobart: Arrivals: 2168; departures: 2457; net: -289
  • Darwin: Arrivals: 259; departures: 3512; net: -139
  • Canberra: Arrivals: 6076; departures: 5938; net: 138.

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