Starting a New Life in Australia

Moving to Australia

The Australian culture and attitude to life is very unique in a world where issues are taken out of context and many things are taken too seriously. Their attitude and national pride has evolved over the years, in what is still a very young country. This land is now becoming one of the most popular countries for Expats to relocate, due to a mixture of the weather, the laid back attitude to life and potential for the future.

The country itself offers such a variety of landscape and lifestyles with many of the nationals living in the "outback" where their nearest neighbour can be literally hundreds of miles away. The fact that such a vastly spread society has been able to prosper is a testament to both the authorities and the Australian's themselves. Australian Culture While Australia was originally dominated by the Aborigine tribes, prior to becoming a colony of Great Britain, there is a heavy Anglo-Celtic theme to the country. In what is historically a fairly new nation, the Australians are slowly but surely adding in their own particular nationalistic characteristics.

The emerging "Aussie" culture has been strongly influenced by American culture with TV and the media very strong in Australia. There has also been a noticeable influx of immigrants from the nearby Asian countries, which together with English speaking immigrants have added to the variety and depth of the

Australian society

As well as TV and the media, sport plays a major part in the Australian way of life with Australian Rules Football, Cricket and Rugby among the many sports in which the countries sports people have excelled. There is a long running rivalry with the United Kingdom, which stems form the earlier days of British rule - culminating in the fierce battle for the cricketing "Ashes" series.

Employment in Australia

Australia has a very impressive unemployment record with under 5% of the work force currently out of work. The main areas of industry in Australia are agriculture, minerals and commodities with the vast desert lands of the out back holding the key to the wealth and prosperity of this great national. The country is home to some of the largest mining companies in the world, with only a fraction of the land available having been explored.

This commodities led economy has led to an imbalance in exports and imports, with Australia predominately an importing country. This has had an impact on the current account deficit of the economy, however rising commodity prices and an ever expanding holiday market have alleviated this to some extent,

There is also the emergence of a services sector, with many areas of professional expertise in relatively short supply in the country. This has led to the influx of many professionals from overseas for industries such as nursing, dentistry and surgery. Many of these foreign professionals have been able to take advantage of a fast track immigration process designed to attract professionals to make up the short fall within Australia.

Property in Australia

The Australian property market obviously has a number of completely different sectors (between the outback and inner city residential markets) but most immigrants will obviously look to the major inner cities on their arrival. As the economic well being of the country tends to depend upon the fluctuating price of commodities, the housing market has historically been a difficult market in which to engineer a good return - however, there are signs that this is changing.

In direct comparison to the UK, the Australian residential market is focused on renting rather outright house purchase. In fact, in many areas of the country it is easier to buy a quality property than rent one. This offers a useful and economical entry point into the housing market, for the expat looking to relocate in the country.

Even though 2005 and 2006 have been difficult times for the Australian housing market, many are forecasting an upturn in 2007. Compared to other developed nations, the Australian property market offers varying and slightly disappointing returns, although for those looking to stay for the long term there may be the opportunity to benefit in due course.

Australian State Benefits

The income tax system in Australia is not as attractive as those in many developed countries, with a distinct lack of various allowances which are common place within Europe. Tax is charged on a Pay As You Go basis, with the proceeds going towards the federal social services budget. There is talk of an additional State tax, but this has yet to be confirmed.

The Australian social benefits system is aimed towards the more vulnerable of society, including one parent families, the old, infirm unemployed or sick. The system is means tested and regularly reviewed for changes in circumstances. New immigrants are not able to claim the full range of social benefits until 104 weeks of residency in the country.

Government figures show that the poorest 10% of society will receive over 600% more in benefits than the richest 10%, over their lifetimes. A reflection of how the authorities have targeted the poor and needy for extra assistance.

Conclusion

To say that Australia is a unique country and culture is an understatement. There are many areas of natural beauty including Ayers rock which is a sight to behold, as well as the quiet calm of the outback. The comparison between the outback and the inner city business world could not be further part, which is what seems to attract a great number of visitors to the country.

The inner city areas offer a great and varied nightlife, coupled with the opportunity to experience the famous sandy beaches of the coast. Christmas in the sun is a novelty for many Europeans, although the UK style socialising culture is still very much prevalent.

For those looking to become part of a growing nation which is still finding its own identity, a move to Australia may be just what you need.

More facts about Australia:-

* Capital: Canberra

* Official Language: English

* Government: Constitutional Monarchy, with Governor General and Prime Minister

* Size: 7,741,220 km2

* Population: 20.7 million

* Currency: Australian Dollar

* International Dialling Code: +61

* Economy: 15th largest in the world

* Religion: Roman Catholic and Anglican


Source by Bob Sheth

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