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Over the last few years we have seen a significant increase in the number of people looking to move to Australia to start a new life, but why is Australia so popular, and why do people continue to flock to a country which is literally thousands of miles from its nearest neighbor?
There are many reasons why people are moving to Australia and it is easy to see what impact immigration is having on the country, the economy and the prospects for the future. In many ways this is a win/win situation with the country benefiting and those looking to relocate to Australia often moving for a better life.
Why consider a move to Australia?
There are a number of obvious reasons why Australia is so popular but there are also a number of perhaps less well-known reasons why the country is suddenly at the top of the expat pile. These include:-
The weather in Australia
If there is one thing which Australia is famous for it is the weather and the golden beaches which dominate the brochures and holiday guides championing the country. However, while the hot weather dominates the minds of people looking towards Australia this is a country which has literally every type of climate and landscape you could think of including tropical,, rain forests, desert and semi arid lands, temperate climate as well as sun, sea and sand.
Unless you have actually visited Australia or researched the country in great detail it is difficult to comprehend how enormous it is and the vast variation in landscapes and climates. The country has a land mass of nearly 8,000,000 km square, an exclusion zone of over 8,000,000 km square and over 34,000 km square of coastline - which should give you an indication of its size!
The history of Australia
The history of Australia is often overlooked but this is a country which was inhabited over 40,000 years ago and has a history, culture and tradition which is deep-seated in Australian society. However, Australia is also a country which has been highly influenced by explorers of the past and has a particularly close association with the UK, and is often spoken about in the same breath as its "neighbor" New Zealand.
As Australia became a more prominent country we saw a massive influx of immigrants with the indigenous Australian population of 350,000 all but overran by those from Europe and other areas of the world. This has led to an interesting clash of cultures, ideals and traditions with Australia now attracting people from all walks of life looking for all manner of lifestyles.
The Australian immigration policy
Those looking to move to Australia are likely to be aware that the government has a very pro active immigration policy which has seen a massive increase in the population over the years. Even though it can be a little more difficult now than it has been in the past to obtain entry to Australia there is no doubt that the fairly "relaxed" immigration policy is here to stay and has proved to be very beneficial for the Austrian authorities and Australia as a whole.
There are a number of different visas available if you are looking to gain access to Australia whether this is on a full-time basis, part-time basis or purely and simply for work. The visa system itself is fairly easy to understand and operate although due to the ever growing number of people looking to move to Australia it may take some time to arrange the necessary paperwork and clearance required. Therefore, if you're looking to move to Australia it is vital that you do your homework and make yourself fully aware of the timescale, paperwork required and exactly what would be expected of you as and when you gain entry to the country.
The Australian economy
For a country which is fairly isolated on the worldwide stage, geographically anyways, Australia continues to grow in stature and is now a major trading partner around the world. Over the last 20 years or so we have seen a significant change in the Australian economy which is now well based and well-positioned for the future.
The prosperity of the Austrian economy is the main reason why the country is still crying out for many different types of skilled workers from countries overseas. While the demand and requirements of the Australian workplace will vary from time to time there is a specific list which details the type of skilled workers required, often allowing them a "fast-track" option via the visa system. It is also worth noting that in general those skilled and experienced workers moving to Australia will very often be able to demand premium rates for their services, which could be well in excess of the wage scales they have left behind.
Many will be surprised that the gross domestic product per capita in Australia is above that of countries such as the US, UK, Germany and France to name but a few. It is also worthwhile remembering that Australia was one of the first economies around the world to break free from the 2009 worldwide economic downturn and return to the growth path.
The political scene in Australia
After years of political unrest and infighting it seems that the political scene in Australia has never been more settled and never been more proactive with regards to the prospects and future of the country. As we touched on above, the Australian economy was one of the first to move out of recession in 2009 purely and simply because of the work carried out by the Australian authorities and their proactive approach to the problem.
While the likes of the UK, US and other countries around the world continue to suffer from the aftermath of the credit crunch and the worldwide economic downturn it seems that Australia is already back on the growth path and looking to the future. This proactive strategy has led to the creation of significant job opportunities both for Australian nationals and skilled immigrants moving from overseas. This is a trend which is likely to continue for some time and many believe the Australian economy will continue to grow well into the future having only scratched the surface of the potential of the country.
Language issues in Australia
Even though the Australian population is fairly varied in its mix, having grown from 3.7 million in 1900 to nearly 22 million in 2009, English is still the main language. Surveys show that for 80% of the Austrian population English is their only language while the additional 20% all have a grasp of English as well. This makes it very easy for those looking to move from English-speaking nations such as the UK and will help with integration into local society, employment and settling down in a new country.
Australia has also become a thriving nation of small businesses with many areas of the economy having remained untapped but now open to entrepreneurs and skilled workers. The language issue should not be underestimated because while there are many prosperous foreign language markets around the world, moving to a market which you will understand without the need for translation will save money, time and much effort. Not to mention the impact this will have on your social life and your ability to "bed down" in your new homeland.
The Australian way of life
The Australian way of life is an aspect that has attracted large numbers of expats to the country looking for the relaxed and jovial culture which has become synonymous with Australia. Whether or not this particular way of life is evident throughout Australia is open to debate but there is no doubt that your stereotypical Australian is still very much alive and kicking, even if they have evolved over the years.
The way of life in Australia has in many ways been highlighted perhaps with a slight bias by programs such as "Neighbors" and "Home and Away" which show sun, sea and sand as far as the eye can see and a lifestyle which seems very much to verge on the relaxed to lazy. Even though many expats may well believe that the way of life in Australia is very much like that highlighted by the above TV programs there is more to Australia and there is more to the culture and way of life of this prosperous nation.
The cost of living in Australia
As you might expect from a country which is enormous in size and very diverse in culture and population, the cost of living Australia also varies enormously. While many expats looking to move to Australia for a new life will need to centre around the likes of Adelaide, Perth, Sydney and other well-known cities purely and simply because of employment opportunities, these are obviously the more expensive areas in which to live and also attract a higher than normal cost of living. However, in many cases this increased cost of living is offset by the potential for increased income for skilled workers in demand.
The cost of living in the outback is very different to the cost of living in the major cities and on the whole the cost of living in Australia compares favorably to the UK, US and other prominent countries around the world. However, it has to be said that the cost of living in Australia has increased significantly since 2000 with many people citing the 2000 Olympics as the fire which started the ongoing period of economic growth for the country.
Property in Australia
As with the cost of living in Australia, the cost of property in many of the more sought-after areas and cities has increased dramatically over the years. However, this has more than been offset by an increase in employment income for those skilled workers moving to Australia and taking up positions were there have been shortfalls in the domestic Australian employment market. As you might expect we are starting to see many of the larger cities and more sought-after areas expand outwards as property prices continue to move higher in the center and buyers look for more value on the outskirts.
The recent worldwide economic downturn saw many former sought-after properties collapse in value purely and simply because of investors sitting on the sidelines and the downbeat prospects for the economy. However, as we touched on above, the Austrian economy has been one of the first to exit the worldwide economic recession and as such we are starting to see more demand and more life in the Australian property market. At some stage the government will need to take more of a hands on approach to the property market because the large influx of immigrant workers is forcing property prices higher in some of the more popular areas and cities of the country.
Like everything else, applying to emigrate to australia need never be difficult if you plan your route in stages.
1. There are many ways you can start off getting help to emigrate to Australia. The Australian economy has never been stronger and the Australian government are particularly looking out for skilled people with a specialisation in many business and trade areas. In order to emigrate you could go the route of an expensive lawyer, or you could get the advice of specilist Australian immigration consultants to see if you qualify for Australian immigration eligibility.
2. If you are wondering about work skills needed to emigrate to
Australia or qualifications needed to emigrate to Australia then it's worth bearing in mind that there is a points system for applying for what is known as the Skilled Visa. You can fill in an online form to see if you satisfy the Australian immigration points system as set out by the Australian Department of Immigration and Multicultural Affairs (DIMIA). A positive assessment does not guarantee eligibility but it does satisfy the basic criteria.Other types of visa are also available. If you want to see how many points do you need to emigrate to australia then you can quickly seek the help of an online Australian immigration visa service.
3. An Australia working visa. Managers, qualified professionals and skilled tradespeople are especially in demand under the Skilled Visa program. Schemes are available for skilled visas on a permanent or temporary basis, and are all based on points needed to emigrate to Australia as set out by the Australian Immigration Department. With the Australian job market advertising over 150,000 jobs each week and unemployment at its lowest in 10 years, being eligible for an Australia work visa has never been more possible. There is a huge demand in the plumbing, security, printing and the building trades in particular. However, despite the huge demand across the board there was a shortage of candidates for jobs in 2004.
4. An Australia working holiday visa. These are exactly what they sound like. There are many people who dream of being able to emigrate to Western Australia or, more specifically, emigrate to Perth Australia for the amazing weather and facilities there. If you are between 18 and 30 and are looking to spend 12 months in Australia then you may qualify for one of the many Australian working holiday visas that are available every year. This visa only permits you to work in a temporary or casual vocation. You may not enter into employment with one employer for a period of longer than 3 months. Also known as an Australia travel visa.
5. Family Visa. If you have an Australian partner, or members of your immediate family are permanently based in Australia then you may qualify for one of several family stream visas. Your application to emigrate to Australia can be done online. The Government of Australia encourages emigration in order to bring families together. Under the Family Visa Emigration Programme, migrants considering emigration must be sponsored by a close family member or fiancé(e) living in Australia. There are 4 schemes to choose from in order to find out if you are eligible for emigration. Select the one that best describes your situation. The sponsor must be either an Australian citizen, permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen, and would usually be 18 years of age or older.
6. Visitors and tourists. All travellers, except New Zealand citizens, must obtain a visa or travel authority before they travel to Australia. But now there is no need to worry about visiting the Australian Embassy or High Commission to get your visa. You can now get your visa online. If you are planning to travel to Australia as a visitor or even on a business trip then you may need either a visa or an ETA (Electronic Travel Authority). An ETA will allow you to spend up to 3 months in Australia and you are free to travel anywhere you like.Find out whether you meet the criteria by taking a free online visa assessment. With the introduction of the ETA you are able to apply online; there is no need to even leave your desk or home.
7. Business and investment visas. If you have had a successful
business career either at a senior executive level or as an owner of your own business you may qualify for one of several visas under the Australian business visa program. Under the two-stage arrangements introduced on 1 March 2003, business migrants are granted a Business Skills (Provisional) visa for four years and, after establishing the requisite level of business presence required by the DIMIA or maintaining their minimum investment, are eligible to make an application for a Business Skills (Residence) visa. There are 4 schemes available under which a business applicant may emigrate to Australia. Choose the one that best describes you by taking a free online assessment.
8. If you are an employee who is head-hunted or moved to your company's Australia office then you can apply under the Australia sponsored work visa. Your employer can effectively sponsor you for this by becoming your Australia Immigration Sponsor. Under this system, if you are an established professional, you can emigrate to Australia without a degree.
9. Retirement visas. If you wish to emigrate to Australia on retirement then you may be eligible for an Asyralia retirement visa given each year. If you are financially secure and would like to spend some of your retirement years in the warmer climates of Australia, find out if you qualify with our free online assessment. Under this system retired people may also choose to work part time if they so wish, so there is a degree of built-in flexibility.
There has never been a better time to emigrate to Australia or to apply for an Autralia Work Permit or Australia visa application. Review the above points and see which approach you are best suited to.
Australia has shown enormous growth over the last 20 years but many believe the next 20 years could be as good if not better with prospects for the country never better. These are the reasons why Australia continues to remain one of the more popular expat destinations in the world.
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