Since Europeans first came to Australia, in 1788, Australian immigration has been essential to the country’s development.
Australia was the last land piece to be discovered after the discovery of the new world. Australia is credited to occupy the position of the smallest continent of the world. It has a variety of climates and vegetations. It includes desert like conditions in the interiors, long beaches along the coastline, corral reefs and vast grasslands. The whole continent is divided into six states and two territories New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria, Western Australia, the Northern Territory, and the Australian Capital Territory, where the capital city of Canberra is located. The country has a democratically elected Government and is led by a Governor General. The Queen is the symbolic head of Australia and the country enjoys close and historic ties with Great Britain.
The world’s smallest continent and the sixth-largest country, Australia has a culture similar to that of the United States. Most Australians live in the temperate southern and eastern parts of the continent; much of the rest is semi-arid to arid. Most Australians are Caucasian, with Asians and Aboriginal people making up the majority of the rest of the population.
The immigrants from different parts of the world has brought with them a rich and diverse culture. No wonder Australia has one of the most diverse culture.
With the end of world war II a flood of Australian immigration started from Greece, Turkey and Italy poured into the country.
There was a wave of Australian immigration from Asia in the seventies. Asians comprise 4 percent of the total population. Sports such as cricket, rugby, football, and yachting are important to Australians, and Art and music are popular pastimes for many Australians.
The Department of Australian immigration was created in 1945 and has metamorphosed through various name to the present when it is known as Department for Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs (DIMIA). At the start it was known as Local Government, Ethnic Affairs and Multicultural Affairs.
Australian immigration was governed by the Migration act of 1958 which spelt out the policy which governs the migrations to Australia. This act can be amended when it is passed by both houses of the parliament. The Migration Act can be amended by the Governor general if recommended by the minister but it has to be tabled on the parliament and it can either accepted as a law or rejected by the parliament. The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission Act 1989 specifies the ministers powers to interfere in various aborigines and immigration matters.
The Australian immigration program is composed of the following category:-
• Immigration stream for people who are having certain vocational skills as specified in the SOL or skill occupation list. Persons with exceptional business skill or outstanding talents can also be included in this stream.
• Australian citizens or permanent resident can sponsor relatives and such persons can be given Australian Immigration
• Former citizens of Australia who want to return to their country
• Citizens of New Zealand