Australia & Oceania
By Laina Aldridge
Prehistoric settlers arrived there from Southeast Asia at least 40,000 years before the first Europeans began exploration in the 17th century. James Cook took possession of the east coast in the name of Great Britain. All of Australia was made British territory in 1829 with the creation of the colony of Western Australia. 6 colonies were created in the late 18th and 19th centuries. They became the Commonwealth of Australia in 1901.
Australia took advantage of its natural resources to develop agricultural and manufacturing industries and to make a major contribution to the Allied effort in both world wars. More recently, Australia has become a competitive, advanced market economy mostly because of economic changes in the 1980's and its location in one of the fastest growing regions of the world economy.
Australia's National Anthem (below)
Advance Australia Fair
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