General information about Australia
The official name is the Commonwealth of Australia.
It is located on the continent of Australia, the island of Tasmania and a number of small coastal islands. Area 7,692,024 km2 (including the island of Tasmania, 68,400 km2). In terms of area, Australia is the smallest continent, but the 6th state in the world. In terms of territory, Australia is almost equal to the United States (excluding Alaska) and about 50% larger than Europe (excluding the European part of the former USSR). Population 19.8 million people. (2002). The official language is English. The capital is Canberra (323 thousand people, 2002). Public holidays: Australia Day on January 26 (established in honor of the landing on this day in 1788 in the current Sydney Bay of a part of the team of the so-called First Fleet that arrived from Great Britain); ANZAC Day April 25 Day of Remembrance for Australian Veterans of All Wars); Birthday of the English monarch, 2nd Saturday in June (not celebrated in Western Australia), National Flag Day on 3 September; Memorial Day (veterans of the 1st World War) 11 November. The monetary unit is the Australian dollar.
Australia controls seven administrative units with the status of “external territories”: Norfolk Island and the Coral Sea Islands in the Pacific Ocean, Christmas Island, Ashmore Islands and Cartier Island, Heard and McDonald Islands, Cocos (Keeling) Islands in the Indian Ocean, as well as Australian Antarctic Territory.
Member of the UN (since 1945), IMF (since 1965), GATT/WTO (since 1948), OECD (since 1971), APEC (since 1989), Pacific Community (since 1947, formerly South Pacific Commission), Pacific Islands Forum (since 1971, formerly the South Pacific Forum).
Australia is the most sparsely populated inhabited continent, with a population density of 2.57 people. per 1 km2 (December 2002). Up to 90% of the population is concentrated in cities and urban-type settlements, St. 60% – in 5 cities – “millionaires”. The bulk of the population are descendants of immigrants from Great Britain and Ireland, as well as from continental, especially southern, Europe. Approximately 200 thousand people. – immigrants from the former USSR. Australians of European descent make up approx. 90% of the country’s population. Immigration plays a big role in population growth. In 1996-2001, it gave 40% of the total population growth. The share of the country’s residents born abroad continues to slowly increase, reaching 23.6% in 2000. Another approximately 20% are second-generation Australians (one or both parents were born outside Australia). In the last three decades, the share of Asian immigration (Vietnamese, Chinese, Filipinos, etc.) has been growing. The share of Europeans in the annual influx of immigrants decreased from more than 80% in the first years after World War II to 40% in the beginning. 2000s The total proportion of people of Asian origin is approx. 7%. The number of indigenous people, aborigines, having sharply decreased after the start of European immigration, has practically recovered – 424 thousand people, or 2.1% of the total population of the country (December 2002).
According to educationvv, the official English language is also the language of international communication. As a result of the emergence of a distinctive Australian culture, a peculiar Australian version of the English language was also formulated with a characteristic accent and vocabulary. Approximately 80% of the population speaks only English. In addition to it, Italian, Greek, Chinese are most used. In total, more than 200 languages are spoken in the country, of which St. 60 are Aboriginal.
The average population growth rate in the country in the last 10 years was 1.3% (higher than that of the main developed countries). Natural increase decreased from 8.5%o in 1981 to 6.4%o in 2001. The birth rate fell over the same period from 15.8% to 13%, and the death rate decreased from 7.3% to 6.6%. Child mortality decreased from 10.0 to 5.2 people. per 1000 newborns. Average life expectancy is one of the highest in the world: 77.1 years for men and 82.3 years for women. The retirement age for men is 65, for women it is 60. The median age of the population is slowly increasing, reaching almost 35 in 2001. According to the 2001 census, women made up 50.65% and men 49.35% of the total population of the country (compared to 50.37 and 49.63% in 1991). Age structure of the population: 0-14 years old – 21%, 15-64 years old – 66.5%, 65 years and older – 12.5%. St. 95% of the population can read and write.
Among the followers of St. 90 religious beliefs are historically dominated by Christians. However, according to the 2001 census, their share compared to 1996 decreased from 71 to 68%. The largest groups of Christians are represented by Catholics – 26.6% (was 27%), followers of the Anglican Church – 20.7% (21%), the United Church – 6.7% (7.5%), Presbyterians and Reformers – 3.8 % (3.4%) and Orthodox – 2.8% (2.8%). The proportion of adherents of Hinduism increased from 1.1 to 1.9%, followers of Islam – from 1.1 to 1.5%. The proportion of unbelievers and undecided is 27.2% (was 25.6%) of the country’s inhabitants.