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Where are our most international suburbs?

By Ray White Whitsunday

Where are our most international suburbs?

Nerida Conisbee, Ray White chief economist

The results of the 2021 Census have now been released and with it, a fascinating look at the diverse demographics of Australia. While most new arrivals to Australia come to Sydney first, it’s not then possible to easily find out where they decide to settle. The Census provides us with a deeper understanding into settlement patterns around the country. And there are many suburbs which are far more popular with international arrivals than others.

Australia’s beaches feature prominently on our most international suburbs lists. Europeans and people from the Americas are particularly attracted to our beachside areas although it’s interesting to see which beachside areas they prefer. People from the Americas (Canada, USA and Brazil) prefer the Northern Beaches of Sydney, while many Europeans (Irish and French) prefer Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs. Germans have shunned Sydney’s beaches and headed up north to the celebrity enclave of Byron Bay, while New Zealanders show a distinct preference for the Gold Coast.

The Brits’ favourite beach is on our west coast with Mindarie, an outer suburban suburb of Perth, containing the highest proportion of English-born residents in Australia. The Scots meanwhile have decided to settle somewhere that sounds like home. Kinross, a burgh of Scotland, no doubt has a lot of Scottish people, however Kinross in Perth also contains the highest proportion of Scottish-born people in Australia.

Some suburbs attract very high proportions of people from certain countries. Topping the list is Harris Park with just over 45 per cent of the population of that suburb having been born in India. It’s no surprise that the influence that this population has had on Indian cuisine and small business has resulted in this suburb being dubbed “Little India”. Cabramatta’s local restaurants and businesses have also had an enormous influence from having the highest proportion of Vietnamese-born residents in Australia.

Australia’s top educational facilities are also attractive to many people looking to settle here. The north shore of Sydney is home to one of the highest concentrations of private schools in the country. It’s likely that this is one factor attractive to people moving to Australia from Hong Kong with Chatswood containing the highest proportion of Hong Kong-born residents in Australia. Inner suburban suburbs of Sydney such as the CBD and Haymarket contain high proportions of Thai and Indonesian-born residents, perhaps attracted to access to nearby universities.

Finally, there are some surprises in the list. Turkish-born residents show a strong preference for Dallas in Melbourne’s outer north, while high proportions of people born in Zimbabwe live in Wellard in outer Perth. North Macedonian-born people have chosen one of the more isolated parts of Australia with the mining town of Port Kembla containing the highest proportion of people born in that country in Australia.

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