Immigration to Australia

Australia’s permanent immigration program has two major components:

The migration component consists of skill stream migrants, family stream migrants and special eligibility migrants. The planning level for the current migration programs is set at 189,770 places with 128,550(68%) skill, 57,400(30%) family and 3,820 (2%) special eligibility and child places.

The humanitarian component is for refugees and others in humanitarian need. The Humanitarian Program is set at about 18,000 places.

In addition, the immigration department has granted 7.7 million temporary visas during the last program year. This includes mainly around 5.0 million visitor and student about 300,000 visas.

Australian Migration has been emerged since 1945 when the population of around seven million (almost 30% of current population) and Australia was just emerging from World War II. At that time Ben Chifley became Australia’s 16th prime minister and established the Department of Immigration on 13 July 1945. The new Minister for Immigration, Arthur Calwell promoted the concept ‘populate or perish’. At that time, the new department took over all the functions of the immigration branch of the Department of the Interior.

In his first ministerial statement to the Federal Parliament on 2 August 1945, Mr Calwell said: ‘If Australians have learned one lesson from the Pacific War, it is surely that we cannot continue to hold our island continent for ourselves and our dependents, unless we greatly increase our numbers.’

Since that time, the department has facilitated the permanent entry of more than seven million people from around the globe to form one of the world’s most linguistically, culturally and religiously diverse nations. Almost half the population of Australia has direct or indirect familial links to another country.

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Today the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP)’s purpose is:

Building Australia’s future through the well-managed entry and settlement of people!

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