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    Australia Government - 1990

      Long-form name: Commonwealth of Australia

      Type: federal parliamentary state

      Capital: Canberra

      Administrative divisions: 6 states and 2 territories*; Australian Capital Territory*, New South Wales, Northern Territory*, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria, Western Australia

      Dependent areas: Ashmore and Cartier Islands, Christmas Island, Cocos (Keeling) Islands, Coral Sea Islands, Heard Island and McDonald Islands, Norfolk Island

      Independence: 1 January 1901 (federation of UK colonies)

      Constitution: 9 July 1900, effective 1 January 1901

      Legal system: based on English common law; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations

      National holiday: Australia Day (last Monday in January), 29 January 1990

      Executive branch: British monarch, governor general, prime minister, deputy prime minister, Cabinet

      Legislative branch: bicameral Federal Parliament consists of an upper house or Senate and a lower house or House of Representatives

      Judicial branch: High Court

      Leaders: Chief of State--Queen ELIZABETH II (since February 1952), represented by Governor General William George HAYDEN (since NA February 1989); Head of Government--Prime Minister Robert James Lee HAWKE (since 11 March 1983); Deputy Prime Minister Paul KEATING (since 3 April 1990)

      Political parties and leaders: government--Australian Labor Party, Robert Hawke; opposition--Liberal Party, Andrew Peacock; National Party, Charles Blunt; Australian Democratic Party, Janine Haines

      Suffrage: universal and compulsory at age 18

      Elections: Senate--last held 11 July 1987 (next to be held by 12 May 1990); results--Labor 43%, Liberal-National 42%, Australian Democrats 8%, independents 2%; seats--(76 total) Labor 32, Liberal-National 34, Australian Democrats 7, independents 3; House of Representatives--last held 24 March 1990 (next to be held by November 1993); results--Labor 39.7%, Liberal-National 43%, Australian Democrats and independents 11.1%; seats--(148 total) Labor 78, Liberal-National 69, independent 1

      Communists: 4,000 members (est.)

      Other political or pressure groups: Australian Democratic Labor Party (anti-Communist Labor Party splinter group); Peace and Nuclear Disarmament Action (Nuclear Disarmament Party splinter group)

      Member of: ADB, AIOEC, ANZUS, CCC, CIPEC (associate), Colombo Plan, Commonwealth, DAC, ESA, ESCAP, FAO, GATT, IAEA, IATP, IBA, IBRD, ICAC, ICAO, ICO, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IHO, ILO, ILZSG, IMF, IMO, INTELSAT, INTERPOL, IOOC, IPU, IRC, ISO, ITC, ITU, IWC--International Whaling Commission, IWC--International Wheat Council, OECD, SPF, UN, UNESCO, UPU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WSG

      Diplomatic representation: Ambassador Michael J. COOK; Chancery at 1601 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington DC 20036; telephone (202) 797-3000; there are Australian Consulates General in Chicago, Honolulu, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, Pago Pago (American Samoa), and San Francisco; US--Ambassador Melvin F. SEMBLER; Moonah Place, Yarralumla, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory 2600 (mailing address is APO San Francisco 6404); telephone p61o (62) 705000; there are US Consulates General in Melbourne, Perth, and Sydney, and a Consulate in Brisbane

      Flag: blue with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant and a large seven-pointed star in the lower hoist-side quadrant; the remaining half is a representation of the Southern Cross constellation in white with one small five-pointed star and four, larger, seven-pointed stars

      NOTE: The information regarding Australia on this page is re-published from the 1990 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Australia Government 1990 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Australia Government 1990 should be addressed to the CIA.

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    Revised 07-Feb-03
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