Australia is a stable, democratic and culturally diverse nation with a highly skilled workforce and one of the strongest performing economies in the world.
With spectacular landscapes and a rich ancient culture, Australia is a land like no other. It is the earth's sixth-largest country in land area and is the only nation to govern an entire continent.
Australia in Brief provides an authoritative overview of Australia's history, the land, its people and their way of life. It also looks at Australia's economic, scientific and cultural achievements and its foreign, trade and defence policies.
This is the 50th edition of Australia in Brief, revised and updated in October 2014. The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade is grateful for assistance from other Government departments and agencies, and various private organisations who have licensed the use of photos and graphics. Money values are given in Australian dollars unless otherwise indicated. Weights and measures are metric and imperial.
With the exception of the Commonwealth Coat of Arms and where otherwise noted, such as copyrighted images, this booklet is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia licence http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/au/.
The booklet should be attributed as Australia in Brief, Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
Use of the Coat of Arms
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Taku Rosie Tarco
As a young girl, Taku Rosie Tarco walked with her auntie and sister along the Canning Stock Route to Billiluna in Western Australia. The Canning Stock Route runs through hundreds of kilometres of rugged sandhill country. The long, reverberating lines in this painting represent the high red sandhills, or jilji, which are found throughout much of the Great Sandy Desert and Japingka, which is the artist's country.
Jilji 2007 by Taku Rosie Tarco, Mangkaja Arts
Acrylic on canvas
119 x 89cm
from the collection of the National Museum of Australia
Photo George Serras, National Museum of Australia