Immigrant population changes in Australia

29 January 2009


An increasing number of Asians particularly from India and China are emigrating to Australia. The Australian Bureau of Statistics report "Portrait of a Nation" said that almost one-fifth of the new arrivals in Australia between 1996 and 2006 came from China and India. Asia may eventually overtake Europe as the main source of immigrants to Australia. However, the most common country of origin remains the UK with twenty-four percent of foreign born residents (92,000) arriving from the UK between 1996 and 2006.

4.4 million people in Australia were born overseas; A 2% increase from the time of the last census in 1996.

Until 1973 the former British colony had a "White Australia" policy, restricting immigration to Westerners. Now six out of ten immigrants are from Asian Countries; 9.5% of immigrants are from China (62,000) and 8.4% from India (54,100). Many of the immigrants are also from Malaysia, the Philippines and South Korea.