The preliminary estimated resident population (ERP) of Australia at 31 March 2008 was 21,283,000 persons, an increase of 336,800 since 31 March 2007 and 102,000 persons since 31 December 2007. The increase for the year ended 31 March 2008 is the largest recorded for a 12 month period since the ERP concept was introduced in 1971.
The growth of Australia's population has two components: natural increase (the number of births minus the number of deaths) and net overseas migration.
Natural increase for the 12 months ended 31 March 2008 was 137,700 persons, a decrease of 0.7% (or 940 persons) on the natural increase for the year ended 31 March 2007 (138,600 persons).
For the year ended 31 March 2008, Australia recorded a preliminary net overseas migration (NOM) estimate of 199,100 persons. This was the difference between 429,300 overseas arrivals that were added to the population (NOM arrivals) and 230,300 overseas departures that were subtracted from the population (NOM departures). The contribution made to population growth by NOM (59.1%) was higher than that of natural increase (40.9%).