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History of Migration to Australia

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    History of Migration to Australia

    Migration to Australia is a long history. Have a look below to know some interesting facts about Australian migration

    The Aboriginal population was about 400,000. Today, more than 20 million people live here. The main reason for this change was migration. In New South Wales, 4 out of 10 are immigrants or children of immigrants. Australia has a rich migration history. However, attitudes towards migration, especially towards the ideal origin of immigrants, have changed significantly over the last 218 years

    The first immigrants were involuntary, and prisoners were transferred from England, Ireland, and to a lesser extent, other British colonies. Between 1788 and 1840, 80,000 people arrived in New South Wales. Since the 1830s, many voluntary immigrants have joined them, mainly from England and Ireland.

    Some came from their resources, others through one of the public or private programs available at the time. However, the discovery of gold near Bathurst in 1851 completely changed the nature of Australian migration. People came from more people and different backgrounds than ever before.

    Between 1851 and 1861, there were more than 600,000 immigrants, most of them from the United Kingdom and Ireland, 60,000 from the European continent, 42,000 from China, 10,000 from the United States, and just over 5,000. Australia has never seen such a new immigrant onslaught, but the growing interest in settling here has continued.

    At the time of the Commonwealth, the total population was about 4 million, of which one in four was born abroad. Many were receiving auxiliary passages. The majority were British or Irish, but quite a few Europeans, mainly Germans and Chinese.

    During the latter half of the 19th century, several colonies funded the immigration of skilled immigrants from Europe, starting with the assistance of German vintners to South Australia. The government found that if it wanted immigrants, it had to subsidize migration; the great distance from Europe made Australia a more expensive and less attractive destination than Canada, the United States, Brazil, or Argentina.

    After World War II, Australia believed that it must increase its population to avoid the threat of another invasion and launched an immigration program whose goal was to increase Australia’s population. Hundreds of thousands of displaced Europeans immigrated to Australia, with more than three million people immigrating from Europe during the late 1940s until the 1960s. Immigration from Asian and other non-European countries started during the 1970s and 1980s. During this period, Australia first began to adopt a policy of ‘multiculturalism.’

    Australia is now one of the most multicultural and diverse nations in the world –globally, with over 200+ languages spoken across the country (primarily English). It is also a modern-day global powerhouse with a fast-growing economy and significant soft power potential. All of this is largely down to its vibrant migration history and ever-growing communities of international diaspora. Australia is considered a multicultural migrant country because nearly a quarter of the population was born in another country, compared to over 10 percent in the US and over 17 percent in Canada.