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3401.0 - Overseas Arrivals and Departures, Australia, Dec 2004  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 08/02/2005   
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DECEMBER KEY FIGURES

Dec 04
Nov 04 to Dec 04
Dec 03 to Dec 04
'000
% change
% change

Short-term visitor arrivals
Trend
448.6
0.5
5.0
Seasonally adjusted
452.2
-0.5
. .
Original
593.1
. .
. .
Short-term resident departures
Trend
391.8
1.8
17.1
Seasonally adjusted
406.9
5.4
. .
Original
509.1
. .
. .

. . not applicable

Visitor arrivals, Short-term
Graph: Visitor arrivals Short-term

Resident departures, Short-term
Graph: Resident departures Short-term



DECEMBER KEY POINTS


TREND ESTIMATES

  • The trend estimate for short-term visitor arrivals to Australia during December 2004 (448,600 movements) increased by 0.5% compared with November 2004. This followed monthly increases of 0.7% each for October and November 2004.
  • Currently, short-term visitor arrivals are 5.0% higher than in December 2003 and 5.5% higher than when the series last troughed in February 2004 (425,300 movements).
  • During December 2004, short-term resident departures (391,800 movements) increased by 1.8% compared with the previous month and followed increases of 2.1% for October and 2.2% for November 2004.
  • Short-term resident departures have recorded continued growth over the past year. Compared with December 2003 (334,500 movements), short-term resident departures are up by 17.1% and up by 37.4% from when they last troughed in April 2003 (285,200 movements). These increases were affected by a break in the trend series.


SEASONALLY ADJUSTED ESTIMATES
  • The seasonally adjusted estimate for short-term visitor arrivals during December 2004 (452,200 movements) decreased by 0.5% compared with November 2004. Short-term visitor arrivals increased by 0.4% for October and 4.1% for November 2004.
  • Short-term resident departures for December 2004 (406,900 movements) increased by 5.4% compared with November 2004 and followed increases of 1.7% for October and 3.1% for November 2004.


ORIGINAL ESTIMATES
  • In original movement terms, there were 593,100 short-term visitor arrivals to Australia and 509,100 short-term resident departures from Australia during December 2004.


NOTES


EARLY ESTIMATES

Early estimates of short-term visitor arrivals for January 2005 will be available on the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) web site on 18 February 2005. These estimates can be accessed by going to the AusStats web page <http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats> and selecting Publications & Data and then Main Features. Select 34 Migration and then select Short-term Visitor Arrival Estimates, Australia (cat. no. 3401.0.55.001).



DATA NOTES

This publication contains movement data. Care should be taken when interpreting this movement data as 'people'. See paragraph 5 of the Explanatory Notes for more detail.


Calculations of percentage and numeric change are based on unrounded data. See paragraph 12 of the Explanatory Notes for more detail.



CHANGES IN THIS ISSUE

There are no changes in this issue.



FORTHCOMING CHANGES

New standard errors


A new set of standard errors will apply to sampled estimates in this publication from the January 2005 issue. This is because the sample for short-term movements has been increased as a result of a review, resulting in smaller standard errors. New standard errors will be presented in the Standard Errors section from the January 2005 issue.



EMERGING ISSUES

December 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami


The 26 December 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami may impact on overseas visitor arrivals from, and resident departures to, affected countries. However, it is not possible as yet to gauge the magnitude of this impact or its duration. There may also be breaks in some trend series as a result of this event.



INQUIRIES

For further information about these and related statistics, contact the National Information and Referral Service on 1300 135 070 or Anne Ward on Canberra (02) 6252 6871.



MAIN FEATURES


SHORT-TERM VISITOR ARRIVALS

In trend terms, short-term visitor arrivals to Australia in December 2004 have increased by 5.0% when compared with December 2003. Monthly increases have been recorded since March 2004 with visitor arrivals increasing from 425,600 movements in March to 448,600 movements in December 2004.


The following table presents the top ten source countries (based on original estimates) for short-term visitor arrivals during December 2004. Seasonally adjusted and trend estimates are also presented for these countries, along with the trend percentage change compared with November 2004 and December 2003.

Short-term Visitor Arrivals, Major Source Countries - December 2004

Trend
Seasonally Adjusted
Original
Nov 04 to Dec 04
Dec 03 to Dec 04
'000
'000
'000
Trend % change
Trend % change

United Kingdom
54.7
57.3
109.2
-0.5
-4.5
New Zealand
87.9
89.2
97.7
-0.1
14.1
Japan
63.5
58.4
62.5
0.6
2.3
United States of America
35.3
37.4
44.1
-0.3
-0.1
Singapore
22.3
21.4
36.0
1.9
3.3
China
24.2
(a)np
25.1
2.8
20.8
Korea
18.3
17.4
19.4
-
2.7
Malaysia
15.2
14.9
18.8
-1.0
1.5
Hong Kong
12.5
12.8
16.4
1.9
12.3
Germany
12.1
12.5
15.4
0.4
4.3

- nil or rounded to zero (including null cells)
(a) Seasonally adjusted data for short-term visitor arrivals from China is of an unpublishable standard.



SHORT-TERM RESIDENT DEPARTURES

In trend terms, short-term resident departures have increased by 17.1% between December 2003 and December 2004 and have recorded consecutive monthly increases during the period. However, this increase was affected by a break in the trend series in December 2003. See paragraph 22 of the Explanatory Notes linked to this Main Features.


The following table presents the top ten destinations (based on original estimates), for short-term resident departures during December 2004. Seasonally adjusted and trend estimates are also presented for these countries, along with the trend percentage change compared with November 2004 and December 2003.

Short-term Resident Departures, Major Destinations - December 2004

Trend
Seasonally Adjusted
Original
Nov 04 to Dec 04
Dec 03 to Dec 04
'000
'000
'000
Trend % change
Trend % change

New Zealand
70.1
74.2
116.6
-0.1
12.5
United States of America
32.2
33.1
41.5
1.1
17.9
United Kingdom
31.8
32.1
33.6
0.8
9.7
Indonesia
29.6
32.6
28.2
4.9
(a)np
Hong Kong
14.8
14.6
21.9
3.5
25.2
China
17.0
16.5
20.6
0.5
38.1
Thailand
18.0
18.7
19.7
3.8
23.8
Fiji
16.9
16.7
18.8
3.5
29.5
Viet Nam
10.2
10.3
18.7
0.7
35.4
Singapore
15.9
17.4
18.5
5.1
28.2

(a) Not available for publication, due to break in the trend series from December 2003. See paragraph 22 of the Explanatory Notes.



SHORT-TERM TRAVEL - THE YEAR 2004

Short-term visitor arrivals

In original terms there were 5.2 million short-term visitor arrivals in Australia in the year ended December 2004. This is the highest number of arrivals ever recorded for a calendar year. In the calendar year 2003 there were 4.7 million visitor arrivals.


The top source countries for short-term visitor arrivals during 2004 were New Zealand (20%), Japan (14%), the United Kingdom (13%), the United States of America (8%) and Singapore and China (each 5%).


Just over half of all short-term visitors to Australia in 2004 stated the main reason for journey as holiday (51%) followed by visiting friends and relatives (20%) and business (9%).


Short-term resident departures

In original terms there were 4.4 million short-term resident departures from Australia in the year ended December 2004. As with visitor arrivals, this is the highest number of resident departures ever recorded for a calendar year. In the calendar year 2003 there were 3.4 million resident departures.


The top destinations for Australian residents departing short-term during 2004 were New Zealand (19%), the United States of America and the United Kingdom (each 9%), Indonesia (8%) and Thailand (4%).


Just under half of all short-term residents departing Australia in 2004 stated the main reason for travel as holiday (47%) followed by visiting friends and relatives (25%) and business (15%).



PERMANENT AND LONG-TERM MOVEMENTS

There were 10,280 permanent (settler) arrivals into Australia during December 2004, an increase of 13.3% when compared with December 2003 (9,080 movements). Settlers born in New Zealand accounted for the largest proportion (15%) followed by the United Kingdom (14%) and China and India (each 7%).


Statistics on overseas arrivals and departures relate to the number of movements of travellers rather than the number of travellers. Therefore, care should be taken when using long-term arrivals data as it is known some individuals who travel multiple times in a year are counted each time they cross Australia's borders (see paragraph 5 of the Explanatory Notes linked to this Main Features). Long-term arrivals in this publication are not an appropriate source of migration statistics. For further information refer to Australian Demographic Statistics (cat. no. 3101.0).


There were 6,070 Australian residents departing permanently from Australia during December 2004, an increase of 15% when compared with December 2003 (5,280 movements).



STATISTICAL SIGNIFICANCE

The above presentation of movements in estimates does not take into account whether the change in movement is statistically significant. Care should be taken when interpreting the impact of numeric and/or percentage change. Please see the Standard Errors document linked to this Main Features.



SEASONALLY ADJUSTED AND TREND ESTIMATES


INTRODUCTION

Seasonally adjusted and trend estimates add to the understanding of Overseas Arrivals and Departures (OAD) statistics. Seasonally adjusted estimates allow users to analyse short-term movements including irregular impacts on the series, while trend estimates provide a better method to analyse and monitor the underlying direction of the short-term movement series. In most cases, the trend series is the best source of information on the long-term direction of these statistics.



SHORT-TERM VISITOR ARRIVALS

Selected Source Countries

The graphs presented below illustrate the impact of the 2003 Rugby World Cup on arrivals from the United Kingdom in the latter half of 2003, and the significant impact of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) on arrivals from Japan.

United Kingdom
Graph: United Kingdom
Japan
Graph: Japan




SHORT-TERM RESIDENT DEPARTURES

Selected destinations

For residents departing to the United States of America the graph illustrates the effect that the terrorist attacks in that country, on 11 September 2001, had on short-term departures of Australian residents to the United States of America. The graph for New Zealand illustrates that departures of Australian residents have been trending upwards since May 2003.

United States of America
Graph: United States of America
New Zealand
Graph: New Zealand


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