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  • Health & Welfare
    family allowance for all children under 16 years of age is payable to the parent or other person with custody In 1984 the federal government introduced a universal health scheme known as Medicare financed in part by a 1 25 per cent levy on taxable incomes above a stated minimum It covers automatic entitlement to subsidized medical benefits and free hospital in patient and outpatient care A home and community

    Original URL path: http://australia-migration.com.au/page/Health_and_Welfare/237 (2016-02-17)
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  • Education - Education in Australia
    non English speaking backgrounds Education is compulsory between the ages of 6 and 15 in all except Tasmania where the upper age limit is 16 Most children however start school at five State schools provide free secular education students may attend religious classes provided by the clergy of various denominations About 72 per cent of children attend state schools which are normally co educational and comprehensive in structure In addition to the state school system there are private schools which are usually denominational often single sex and charge tuition fees A number of private schools which in some states are called public schools as in Great Britain accept day students and boarders Special arrangements are made for children living in the remote outback or otherwise isolated from the school system including extension learning schemes and radio tuition through the Schools of the Air Schooling is provided at kindergartens and play centres for children from 2 to 6 years of age the Australian Broadcasting Corporation conducts broadcasts for kindergarten children unable to attend such centres Most children transfer from the primary to the secondary school level at the age of 12 Secondary schools known as high schools and secondary colleges provide five or six year courses which enable final year students to take state examinations for university entrance In the early 1990s Australia had more than 10 000 state and private primary and secondary schools with a combined annual enrolment of some 3 million students Specialized Schools The federal government maintains training colleges for the defence services the Australian Forestry School in Canberra and the School of Pacific Administration in Sydney The last mentioned conducts training programmes attended primarily by civil service administrators from Papua New Guinea Federal funds also support the Australian Film Television and Radio School the Australian Maritime

    Original URL path: http://australia-migration.com.au/page/Education/239 (2016-02-17)
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  • Culture - Australian culture
    society in which the Aborigines marginalized since the arrival of Europeans have also begun to play a larger part Australia produced noted writers and painters from the earliest days and Nobel Laureates like the author Patrick White However a much wider cross section of society now participates in the arts thanks to government subsidies and the provision of greatly improved facilities State capitals and provincial towns alike have built or

    Original URL path: http://australia-migration.com.au/page/Culture/240 (2016-02-17)
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  • Forstry, fishing & mining - Forestry, fishing and mining in Australia
    of Australia holds great promise for the future development of the country The gold discoveries of the 1850s were responsible for the first major wave of immigration and for the settlement of the interior Today Australia is self sufficient in most minerals of economic significance and in several cases is among the world s leading producers Minerals are found in most states but Western Australia has the largest share of total mineral production 37 per cent and contains 63 per cent of metallic mineral production Production of coal oil natural gas and metallic minerals was valued at about US 19 billion a year in the early 1990s Metallic minerals account for about 42 per cent of total output with gold and iron ore the most significant components Output in tonnes of the main minerals in 1994 included black coal 178 3 million brown coal or lignite 49 8 million bauxite 41 2 million copper 434 000 gold 255 8 iron ore and concentrate 123 890 manganese ore 2 04 million nickel 72 000 tin 7 970 and uranium 2 750 Australia accounts for some 12 per cent of the world s gold production About 70 per cent of the total is derived from Western Australia notably from near Kalgoorlie The gold is mainly exported to Singapore Japan Switzerland and Hong Kong Since the discovery of the Kimberleys diamond deposit Western Australia in 1979 Australia has become the world s largest producer by volume with about 36 per cent of the world s total Production reached 42 million carats in 1993 almost all came from the giant Argyle Mine in the Kimberleys About 97 per cent of Australia s iron ore output comes from the Pilbara region also in Western Australia Iron ore reserves also exist at Iron Knob in South Australia on Cockatoo Island in Yampi Sound off Western Australia in north west Tasmania and in Gippsland in Victoria Almost all of the iron ore is exported Australia is now Japan s main supplier and other important markets include China Germany Korea and Taiwan The discovery and exploitation of enormous bauxite deposits enabled Australia to become in the 1980s the world s largest bauxite and alumina producer and one of the largest aluminium producers The most important mines are located to the south of Perth in Western Australia on the Cape York Peninsula in Queensland and on the Gove Peninsula in the Northern Territory Uranium mines are located in the Northern Territory the Ranger and Nabarlek mines and at Olympic Dam in South Australia All production is exported exports are in line with the country s anti nuclear policy The hard or bituminous black coal industry is heavily concentrated in New South Wales and Queensland which have about 47 per cent each of production Australia is one of the world s largest exporters of coal Victoria s lignite or brown coal desposits are mined to supply the electricity generating industry Nickel is mined at Kambalda south east of Kalgoorlie at

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  • Tourism, geology
    account of the balance of payments There has been a strong growth in domestic tourism during this period which has tapped the expanding range of attractions in each state and territory theme and amusement parks zoos art galleries and museums certain mines and factories national parks historic sites and wineries Foreign visitors show broadly similar interests but most come on standardized packages which focus on a few key attractions notably Sydney the Great Barrier Reef in Queensland the Northern Territory s Kakadu National Park and the beach resorts in the Brisbane Cairns and Sydney regions Energy Electricity supply is the responsibility of the state governments In the early 1990s about 89 per cent of electricity was generated in thermal facilities the great majority of which burned bituminous coal or lignite The country also had several hydroelectric plants notably the major Snowy Mountains Scheme primarily serving Canberra Melbourne and Sydney and a number of smaller facilities in Tasmania In the early 1990s Australia s aggregate installed electric generating capacity was about 33 8 million kW and its annual production of electricity totalled almost 160 billion kWh Australia is almost self sufficient in oil requirements about 4 per cent of annual consumption was imported in the early 1990s Geology Australia was originally part of the ancient continent of Gondwanaland which had earlier formed part of the supercontinent of Pangaea Much of it is geologically ancient the oldest known rock formations have been dated at between 3 and 4 3 billion years old The great plateau of the Western Australian Shield is underlaid by a vast stable shield of Precambrian metamorphic and igneous rocks ranging in age from 570 million to 3 7 billion years These form the core of the ancestral continent which with Antarctica split off from Gondwanaland during the Jurassic

    Original URL path: http://australia-migration.com.au/page/Tourism_geology/242 (2016-02-17)
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  • Water & land rescources - rescources of Australia
    between the Indian and South Pacific oceans south east of Asia and forming with the nearby island of Tasmania the Commonwealth of Australia a self governing member of the monwealth of Nations The continent is bounded on the north by the Timor Sea the Arafura Sea and the Torres Strait on the east by the Coral Sea and the Tasman Sea on the south by the Bass Strait and the Indian Ocean and on the west by the Indian Ocean The Commonwealth of Australia extends about 4 000 km 2 485 mi from Cape Byrne in the east to Western Australia and about 3 700 km 2 300 mi from Cape York in the north to Tasmania in the south Its coastline measures some 36 735 km 22 826 mi The area of Australia including Tasmania is 7 682 300 sq km 2 966 151 sq mi The area of the continent alone is 7 614 500 sq km 2 939 974 sq mi making Australia the smallest continent and one of the largest countries in the world The Commonwealth of Australia is made up of six states New South Wales Queensland South Australia Tasmania Victoria and Western Australia and two territories the Australian Capital Territory and the Northern Territory Australia s external dependencies are the Australian Antarctic Territory Christmas Island the Cocos Islands the Territory of Heard Island and McDonald Islands Norfolk Island the Ashmore and Cartier Islands and the Coral Sea Islands Territory Canberra is the capital of Australia Remotest of the settled continents Australia is also the flattest and except for Antarctica the driest The average elevation is about 300 m 987 ft and only 6 per cent of its area is above 610 m 2 000 ft The vast interior of Australia known to white Australians as the Outback is made up of plains and low plateaux which are generally higher in the north east Low lying coastal plains averaging about 65 km 40 mi in width fringe the continent The coastal plains in the east south east and south west are the most densely populated areas of Australia In the east the coastal plains are separated from the interior by the Great Dividing Range or in eastern Highlands This mountainous region averages approximately 1 220 m 4 000 ft in height and runs parallel to the eastern coast from the Cape York Peninsula in the north to Victoria State in the south east Subdivisions of the range have many names including from north to south the New England Range the Blue Mountains and the Australian Alps including the Snowy Mountains In Victoria where the range extends westward it is known as the Grampians or by the name given by the indigenous Aborigines Gariwerd The highest peak in the Australian Alps and the loftiest in Australia is Mount Kosciusko 2 228 m 7 310 ft in the Snowy Mountains of New South Wales The Great Dividing Range continues into Tasmania which was separated from the south

    Original URL path: http://australia-migration.com.au/page/Water_and_land_rescources/243 (2016-02-17)
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  • Literature & Art - Australian literature and art
    Sydney the Queensland Herbarium 1874 the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery 1852 in Hobart and the Museum of Victoria in Melbourne incorporating the former National Museum of Victoria 1854 and Science Museum of Victoria 1870 Melbourne s renowned Botanic Gardens houses the National Herbarium a research centre with specimens and documents dating back to the mid 19th century The Australian National Gallery opened in Canberra in 1982 and the federal capital will also be the site of a new national museum scheduled to open in 2001 Literature Australia s Aborigines had a rich oral tradition It included not only sacred mythology but also ordinary tales and stories some oral history or presumed to be so A number of the stories existed in several versions the version used depended on the situation and the storyteller See Also Australian Literature Paintings Long before the arrival of Europeans the Aborigines had developed unique and highly distinctive art forms usually associated with sacred ritual Sand rock and cave painting and the carving of wood and other materials were widespread Ochre bark painting was predominantly associated with Arnhem Land the style of western Arnhem Land was particularly naturalistic showing figures against an open background Body decoration was also used the ritual body painting of central Australia was particularly elaborate The value of early paintings by European immigrants lies primarily in their importance as a record of the settlement of the country Not until the 1880s did the first generation of white Australian artists unhampered by the restrictions of European discipline capture the unique Australian scenery its light and atmospheric colour It included Tom Roberts Frederick McCubbin and Sir Arthur Streeton From the early 1940s the work of Australian artists reflected a gradual transition from the generally accepted traditional school to the modern style Australian painters of the 20th century include Sir William Dobell known for his portraits Sir George Russell Drysdale noted for depictions of the isolated inhabitants of the interior of the country and Frederick Ronald Williams whose landscapes and seascapes were notable for their quality of light The work of Sir Sidney Nolan based on themes derived from Australian history and folklore has achieved world renown as has that of Brett Whiteley and Arthur Boyd Aborigine artists drawing on traditional styles and themes have found receptive audiences in Europe and North America in recent years See Aboriginal Art Australian Art and Architecture The oldest music in Australia is that of the Aborigines Music plays a central role in both their social and sacred life During social gatherings called corroborees singing and dancing provide the major form of entertainment In sacred ceremonies songs serve as the vital link with the realm of the Dreamtime spirits who fashioned the earth and created all living things on it These songs sung in sacred ceremonies ensure the survival and propagation of all plant and animal life In the north of Australia accompaniment was provided by the didgeridoo and by clapping sticks In southern and central regions boomerangs

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  • Economy and people - Australian economy and people
    twice the area of Beijing and six times that of Rome Australia s other major cities are 1993 greater city Melbourne 3 198 200 Brisbane 1 454 800 Perth 1 239 400 and Adelaide 1 076 400 Canberra the purpose built national capital and the only one of Australia s largest cities located inland had a population of 328 000 in 1994 Religion Australia has no established Church and its constitution guarantees freedom of worship Although the majority of the population characterizes itself as Christian most individuals are not active in that faith and Australian society is predominantly secular The largest Christian denominations are the Roman Catholic and Anglican churches with about 24 per cent of the total population Anglican and 27 per cent Catholic Over 25 per cent more belong to other Christian denominations predominantly Nonconformist and Protestant but also including Eastern Orthodox communities There are small Jewish Buddhist and Muslim communities The number of Buddhists and Muslims has increased sharply since the 1970s in keeping with changing immigration patterns Population Australia s indigenous Aborigines and Torres Strait Islanders today make up just 1 5 per cent of the country s population Almost 95 per cent of Australians are of European descent The majority have British or Irish heritage but about 18 per cent have other European origins Asians including people from the Middle East account for about 3 5 per cent of the population There has been a significant change in population structure since 1945 Before World War II more than 95 per cent of the population was of British or Irish origin However a post war immigration drive brought not only a large number of immigrants from the British Isles but also many from continental Europe Since then more than 2 million other Europeans have migrated to Australia During the 1960s the White Australia policy which had underpinned both colonial and federal immigration policies for 100 years see History below began to be relaxed and was formally abandoned in 1973 Initially most non European immigrants were from Latin America and the Middle East notably Lebanon However since the late 1970s there have been increasing numbers of immigrants from Asia especially South East Asia and China many early South East Asian arrivals were refugees The 1991 census underlines the changes Figures on Australians born overseas show 22 5 per cent were born in Great Britain or Ireland 30 per cent were born in other European countries and 21 per cent were born in Asia and the Middle East English is the official language of Australia Aboriginal and other languages are spoken in ethnic communities Population Characteristics Australia is the most sparsely populated of the inhabited continents In 1993 Australia had an estimated population of 17 657 400 The average population density is just over 2 people per sq km 6 per sq mi The average figure is very misleading however For climatic and other environmental reasons Australia s settlement is one of the most heavily concentrated in the world some 90 per cent of the population lives in about 3 per cent of the land area In all 85 per cent of the population is classified as urban and lives in the towns and cities along the eastern south eastern and south western seaboards and in Tasmania In addition the majority of the 12 per cent of the rural population is settled in a narrow fertile crescent running from about Brisbane in Queensland to Adelaide in South Australia and bounded in the interior by the western edge of the Great Dividing Range The greatest growing region is the east coast of Queensland boosted by its nearness to the booming economies of South East Asia The coastal zones around and between the mainland capitals in the east south east and south west are also growing rapidly The remaining 97 per cent of Australia is uninhabited or virtually so with an average population density of less than 0 03 people per sq km 0 09 per sq mi Average densities only begin to approach 0 3 people per sq km 1 per sq mi in the semi arid grazing lands of the interior of Queensland New South Wales and South Australia where the huge cattle and sheep stations are located and in the areas around the few settlements of the interior and western and northern coasts They include Alice Springs and Darwin in the Northern Territory and in Western Australia Kalgoorlie and Boulder the western coast between Dampier and Port Hedland and the diamond mining area of the Kimberleys Australia s population grew at an annual rate of 1 4 per cent during the early 1990s The principal reason for this growth has been the continued high level of immigration which has maintained the numbers of younger people in the childbearing and childrearing age groups Average life expectancy is about 80 years for women and 73 years for men However life expectancy among the Aborigine population is generally much lower In particular Aborigines who still live in the more remote Outback areas often have to endure living conditions more associated with the developing nations This is reflected in a disease profile that includes trachoma leprosy tuberculosis and intestinal illnesses as well as diabetes The Aborigines The first Australians were the Aborigines Although the modern population shows considerable genetic diversity Aborigines are quite distinct from any group outside the continent Aboriginal traditions assert that they were always in Australia However anthropologists believe that they emigrated from somewhere in Asia and first arrived in Australia between 60 000 and 40 000 years ago at a time of lowered sea levels which created an almost continuous land bridge between the two continents Rising sea levels subsequently disrupted this relatively easy means of migration and some 13 500 to 8 000 years ago separated Tasmania from the mainland The island s Aborigine population subsequently developed in a somewhat different cultural way from the Aborigines of continental Australia These original Australians were primarily nomadic hunter

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