Solomon Islands population census results | Pacific Beat

Solomon Islands population census results

Solomon Islands population census results

Updated 15 February 2012, 13:01 AEDT

The latest Solomon Islands population has surpassed half a million - that's according to the latest census results.

It's been a decade since the last census report, and in that time the population has leaped 100-thousand, but the growth rate has actually declined.

The Government Statistician, Nick Gagahe says it may take another six months to analyse the survey.

Presenter: Bo Hill

Speaker: Solomon Islands Government Statistician, Nick Gagahe

GAGAHE: There are no major surprises, except that we have surpass of half-a-million. Now we have a population since 22nd November, 2009, was 515-thousand-870.

HILL: And what do those people look like?

GAGAHE: Well demographically, they are a very young population and the distribution of the population across the islands, across the provinces is more or less like what it was in 1999, but Guadalcanal which was third in 1999 census now becomes the second most populous province, Western Province becomes the third most populous province.

HILL: Was every household interviewed?

GAGAHE: Every occupied household was interviewed, around 92-thousand households.

HILL: Is there anything in the preliminary analysis that you can see that has changed in the last ten years?

GAGAHE: Well, the population growth rate, the annual growth rate has gone down from 2.8 in the 99 census, that is 1986-99 period and now between the '99 census and 2009 census, we have the population growth rate to be 2.3, which is also similar to what's happening in the neighbouring Vanuatu.

When we first analysed this data, we will certainly come out with the reasons.

HILL: Would a decline in population growth change government policy in anyway?

GAGAHE: May be an example will be on education, the government will be in a better pposition to know what the current number of primary school age population and their intention in tackling this kind of young population. We have a median population of 19.7, that is half of the population is about 19.7 is old and half of the population is below the 19.7 age. The young population is because we have a population that's reproductive age, it is a bigger population so they reproduce and the momentum of reproducing themselves, and it will be far into the future before we can see a population to be ageing like what is happening in a metropolitan country like Australia and New Zealand.

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