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Regional Queensland ranks #1 for most jobs and population movement

November 3 2022

Almost a third of all jobs advertised in regional Australia last month were in Queensland, with a record 93,000 roles available nationally, according to the Regional Australia Institute (RAI).

RAI CEO Liz Ritchie said while jobs vacancies declined in our capital cities in September, regional vacancies continued to increase over the month, leading to a very high rate of annual growth at 30.2%.

“The latest figures show more than 27,543 roles were advertised to jobseekers in and around regional Queensland, and again professional roles are at the top of the list,” Liz Ritchie said.

Speaking at the RAI’s Regions Rising state event in Toowoomba today, Ms Ritchie said the local region (Toowoomba and South-West QLD) made the Top 5 list, nationally, for largest monthly job increases, with a jump of 4.4%.

“The Gold Coast also saw a 40.3% increase in jobs advertised from this time last year, boasting more than 7,960 roles in just one month,” Liz Ritchie said.

In the Toowoomba and South-West region, employers are looking to fill 2,756 jobs. More than 560 are ‘Professional’ roles which include Medical Practitioners and Nurses (157). Technical and Trade roles (443), including Automotive Engineers (183) are the second in-demand category. And Labourers come in third, with 404 jobs available.

As job vacancies continue to climb in regional Queensland, it’s also the most popular destination for both metro and regional movers.

“The average number of people moving from our capitals to the regions is still 15% higher than the two years pre-pandemic and Queensland is by far and away the most attractive to our movers,” Liz Ritchie said.

“When we look at the Top 10 destinations where people are choosing to relocate to regionally, Queensland has five – Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Cairns, Townsville and Toowoomba.”

Full details of the September quarter Regional Movers Index, in partnership with the Commonwealth Bank will be released in mid-November.

“We know these figures present both opportunities and challenges for regional towns and cities around Queensland. It’s not a secret that it is placing pressure on housing,” Liz Ritchie said.

At the start of the pandemic, the median regional dwelling price in Queensland was around $380,000. Prices increased each month until June 2022 to reach a new peak of around $565,000 – an increase of nearly 50%.

“With regional rental vacancy rates falling under 0.5% in most markets, we welcome the Palaszczuk Government’s $1billion commitment to see 5,600 more social and affordable homes over the next five years,” Ms Ritchie.

“Increasing the number of rental homes and apartments in regional areas and reducing recruitment difficulties for employers are two key elements of the RAI’s Regionalisation Ambition 2032 launched at our Summit in Canberra.”

“I look forward to sharing the RAI’s vision for regional Australia in Toowoomba and what it means for Queenslanders,” Liz Ritchie concluded.

To find out more about the RAI campaign to Rebalance the Nation, go to

Regions Rising is the RAI’s national event series, where the national think-tank takes its research around the country. Queensland’s event in Toowoomba is the final in-person event for 2022. Details of Regions Rising 2023 will be available shortly.

To view the RAI’s Job Vacancy Map which details all roles advertised nationally for September, please click here.

Media are invited to attend today’s Regions Rising Queensland event in-person or virtually. To obtain the virtual link, please email [email protected]. For a copy of the full program, please click here.


 Location  Advertised Job Numbers
 Gold Coast  7,965
 Sunshine Coast  4,070
 Central Queensland  4,456
 Far North Queensland  7,477
 Outback Queensland  819
 Toowoomba and South-West Queensland  2,756
 TOTAL Regional Queensland  27,865
 TOTAL Brisbane  34,865


For media enquiries contact:

Amanda Barwick
Regional Australia Institute
0429 142 232
[email protected]