October saw the publication of the long-awaited Australia in the Asian Century WhitePaper by the Australian government.Its goal is to define and drive prosperity andpopulation growth in partnership withsurrounding Asian countries. Several factors besides obvious geographical proximity are driving Australia’s alignment with Asia…Credit: theaustralian.com.au
ShiftingDemographics Recently there’s been an increasingly large shift in migration with almost 2 million of Australia’s 5 million strong current migrant population born in Asia. With a growing middle class which will soon be the largest in the world, Asia will continue to require the natural resources found in Australia like iron ore, coal and liquid natural gas (LNG).
ShiftingDemographics The migration program for 2011-2012 saw seven of the top 10 countries contributing to Australian migration come from Asia including India, China, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, South Korea, and Vietnam. The largest percentage of new migrants, 23%, comes from the Indian sub-continent followed by 18.3% from the northern part of Asia.
Large Asian StudentContingent in Australia Asia currently provides the majority of international students to Australia every year. More than 423,000 Asian students studying in Australia contribute billions of dollars to the local economy.
Large Asian StudentContingent in Australia The Australian government is working to keep as many of those highly-educated graduates to stay in the country by improving post-study work rights for students with a bachelor degree or a PhD. Students with engineering, geosciences and maths degrees are in high demand in Australia.
Grants for AustralianStudents to Studyin Asia But the Asian century is not a one-way street. Australia has announced a $37 million AsiaBound grants program for more than 10,000 Australian students to study in Asia. The grants are valued at $2,000 to $5,000 for short-term exchange study.
Grants for AustralianStudents to Studyin Asia Other grants of $1,000 are being provided for intensive language training to help students preparing to study in Asia. The grant program is designed to help Australian students establish networks with Asian students which will hopefully turn into lifelong professional relationships.
More AustraliansEnjoying Travel to Asia A growing number of Australians are finding Asia to be the ideal place to holiday. In 2011, 3.5 million Australians travelled to Asia; most of the trips were to Southeast Asia. By 1995, almost 40% of Australians travelled to Asian countries. In 1998, Indonesia eclipsed both the United Kingdom and the United States as a tourist destination.
And Finally… Australia in the Asian Century will provide broader and deeper relationships in the Asian region creating a transformative period in history. Closer educational, cultural and personal relationships with Asia will benefit the entire nation.
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