Australian Top News
Economic, Political, and Social Affairs
Australia Joins Pacific Rim Power Team
Dating back to the 1800's the economy of Australia has been relatively strong. Having sheep brought to Australia in 1797 allowed them to export wool to England. This started the drive of their economy. Then with the discovery of gold in 1851 by Edward Hargraves, over 370,000 immigrants rushed to Australia. "Victoria contributed more than one third of the world's gold output in the 1850s and in just two years the State's population had grown from 77,000 to 540,000 (Wells)". Even though there economy was booming, most of their trade was done with European and North American Markets.
Today, Australia has switched their trading ground from the European and North American markets to more with the Asia Pacific Region. The biggest export fueling their economy at this time is their natural resources. In Australia their economy is characterized by a east/west divide. On the east is the home to Australia's service and financial industries. "Australia has a sound, well capitalized banking sector. Its banks are large by global standards, with a strong retail base, highly developed wealth management capabilities, and full service commercial, trade finance and corporate advisory operations reaching out into the region, (Australia Trade Commission)". For the west side, they control Australia's natural resources, which includes iron ore, oil, and natural gas. As of now, China has become Australia's largest trading partner. Australia has come to rely on the China and India for these exports. While China needs the natural gas, Australia also leans on China for their imports such as clothes and toys.
With the relationship that has formed between China and Australia, giving them both a good stand in the economy of the entire globe they are bound to get far. Over the years Australia will form bigger bonds with others in the Pacific Rim, such as India and Japan, making their economic standing sky rocket with the rest of them. Already having a solid base to go off of, and a strong banking system buts them in a good position for the future. "Australia's ability to benefit from the increased prosperity of Asia is due to a number of factors - our proximity, our natural resource endowments and our strong institutions. The same factors will underpin Australia's relationship with Asia well into the future." (Australian Government). By 2030, they will play a significant part of a Pacific Rim economy that will dominate the world economically with Australia providing much of the natural resources to the area.
State and Territories Take Matters Into Their Own Hands
Australia’s government is broken down into four divisions. The commonwealth at the top, then state, territory, and finally the local government. The power of the Commonwealth is held in their Parliament, which is broken into the House of Representatives and the Senate. Commonwealth of Australia was first put into effect in 1901. Since Australia is a federal system of government all the Parliament has power to do is look over foreign relations, taxation, and immigrants. Australia is also ruled by a prime minister, who is just a conventional part of the government. At this point in time Julia Gillard is the Prime Minister of Australia. There are also the states that have their own laws. The Australian nation was created by the federation of the six British self-governing colonies of New South Wales, Tasmania, Queensland, Western Australia, Victoria and South Australia, which became the ‘Original States’ in the Commonwealth of Australia. Each state regulates education, public health, public transport, and community service. As for the territories, they have almost the same duties as a state.
Throughout the years there have come to be several problems that the Commonwealth cannot come to terms with. One right now being taxation on alcoholic beverages. "Misuse of alcohol is recognised by the National Drug Strategic Framework as one of the most significant causes of drug-related harm in Australia" (Alcohol In Australia). Some go on to say that the taxation should be lowered, but this backfires when the thought of people drinking too much, and being hospitalized because it is cheaper. Also the fact that the alcohol tax in Australia brings in 6 billion dollar worth of revenue sways some to the side of taxation. With the Commonwealth, federal government, not being able to come to an agreement on a variety of different topics and looking to tax the people more is going to lead to States rising up.
By 2030, the state and territory governments will take matters into their own hands as the Commonwealth fails to address the concerns of the people. These governments will slowly gain more power and provide more services for the public. "The New South Wales, Queensland or Victorian Constitutions do not separate judicial and legislative powers, the legislature in any of these States is able to “meddle with” the judicial process." (Alvey). With no doctrine that governs separation of power at the state governments, these governing bodies will find ways to increase their reach and power.
Aborigines Have Gone Extinct and Country Faces Social Crisis
Due to everything that has happened in Australia, their society has become very diverse. With all the aging population, the amount of young adults make up a lot smaller portion of the population than they did in the 1900's. There are also a lot less people getting married. Up to 1982 the Australian government was practicing forced adoptions, where mothers who were deemed unfit to take care of their child had the child removed from them without consent and adopted by a married couple. Throughout the years there has been more and more culture diversity. The proportion of people born that are native to the land is less and less every year. Aborigines only make up 2.5% of the Australian population as of 2006. More and more immigrants are coming into Australia and causing the rise in oversea people. With the rise in the population the country is starting to feel the hurt as social programs are having trouble keeping up. "Homelessness has become a common phenomenon in the country. The Institute of Health and Welfare found that between 2010 and 2011, an estimated 19,500 people from regional areas received support from a specialist homeless service," (Slavkov). The waiting time to even get a public house is up to five years. Hospital waiting lists have also increased even under the health care reform that the Federal Labor Government put into place. The Australian government is simply underfunding essential social needs.
Several decades from now, the amount of native people will get to the point of extinction and the only people living there will be the one who have immigrated into the country. Not only will there be all the English settlers but more Chinese and Japanese will start to find their home in Australia. Even though the top language of Australia is english, forms of the Chinese language are starting to make an impact on the Australian culture. By 2030, Australia is going to be considered another melting pot of the world, without any of its native people left to call this place their land.