Sunshine State's population growth slowest in 15 years

QUEENSLAND'S population growth has slowed to its lowest rate in 15 years, according to figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

"The sunshine state's growth rate was 1.5% in the year to September 2014," said ABS spokesman Phil Browning.

"While this is similar to the national growth rate, it is well below the state's 15-year average annual rate of 2.1%.

"This slower growth is due to a nine-year low in the state's net overseas migration and one of the lowest net interstate migration increases in over 30 years."

Western Australia's growth slowed considerably to 2.1% over the year to September - its lowest rate in more than nine years and down from a high of 3.7% two years ago.

Mr Browning attributed the drop to a fall in net interstate migration from 11,400 people two years ago to just 300.

Australia's total population increased by 354,600 people to reach 23.6 million by the end of September 2014, a growth rate of 1.5%.

Over the year, natural increase contributed 150,700 to Australia's population, made up of 303,000 births (3% lower than the previous year) and 152,300 deaths (3.3% higher than the previous year).

In the same period, overseas migration contributed 203,900 people to the population (12.8% lower than the previous year), and accounted for 57% of Australia's total population growth.

Lebanon had the highest population growth rate of any country in 2013, with a total increase of 9.37%.

War-torn Syria was at the other end of the spectrum, its population dropping by 9.73%.

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