Kari Bourne

Australia records longest life expectancy ever

AUSTRALIANS are living longer now than they ever have before.

The highest life expectancy estimates ever recorded in Australia were released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics today.

The figures suggest a boy born today could expect to live for 79.9 years and a girl 84.3 years.

ABS director of demography, Bjorn Jarvis, said for those approaching retirement age of 65 years, males could expect to live a further 19 years and females a further 22 years.

"Australia's life expectancy at birth continues to be amongst the highest in the world," Mr Jarvis said.

"The combined male and female figure of 82 years, while a little lower than Japan and Hong Kong, is higher than Canada, New Zealand, the UK and the USA."

The Australian Capital Territory had the highest life expectancy at birth with 81.2 years for males and 85.1 years for females. The lowest life expectancy was in the Northern Territory, at 74.7 years for males and 80.0 years for females.

While there were 147,098 deaths registered in Australia in 2012, the standardised death rate fell to 5.5 deaths per 1000 people, the lowest rate ever recorded in Australia.

In 2002, the death rate was 6.8 deaths. The decrease over the past 10 years was greater for males, at about two deaths per 1000 males, than for females, at about one death per 1000.

Full details can be downloaded from the ABS website.