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Australia Government: from the All Country Info reference guide to country facts

Australia Government

Australia Government: A summary of information about Australia Government, from government research data as well as independent research and other sources.

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Australia: Government

Country name
conventional long form: Commonwealth of Australia
conventional short form: Australia
Data code
AS
Government type
democratic, federal-state system recognizing the
British monarch as sovereign
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)
National holiday
Australia Day, 26 January (1788)
Constitution
9 July 1900, effective 1 January 1901
Legal system
based on English common law; accepts compulsory ICJ
jurisdiction, with reservations
Suffrage
18 years of age; universal and compulsory
Executive branch
chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952),
represented by Governor General Sir William DEANE (since 16 February
1996)
head of government: Prime Minister John Winston HOWARD (since 11 March
1996); Deputy Prime Minister John ANDERSON (since NA)
cabinet: Cabinet selected from among the members of Federal Parliament
by the governor general on the advice of the prime minister
elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; governor general appointed
by the monarch; following legislative elections, the leader of the
majority party or leader of a majority coalition is usually appointed
prime minister by the governor general for a three-year term
note: government coalition - Liberal Party and National Party
Legislative branch
bicameral Federal Parliament consists of the
Senate (76 seats - 12 from each of the six states and two from each of
the two territories; one-half of the members elected every three years
by popular vote to serve six-year terms) and the House of
Representatives (148 seats; members elected by popular vote on the
basis of proportional representation to serve three-year terms; no
state can have fewer than five representatives)
elections: Senate - last held 3 October 1998 (next to be held by
October 2001); House of Representatives - last held 3 October 1998
(next to be held by October 2001)
election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by
party - Liberal Party-National Party coalition 35, Australian Labor
Party 29, Australian Democratic Party 9, Green Party 1, One Nation
Party 1, independent 1; House of Representatives - percent of vote by
party - NA; seats by party - Liberal Party-National Party coalition
80, Australian Labor Party 67, independent 1
Judicial branch
High Court, the Chief Justice and six other justices
are appointed by the governor general
Political parties and leaders
Australian Democratic Party ;
Australian Labor Party ; Green Party ; Liberal
Party ; National Party ; One
Nation Party
Political pressure groups and leaders
Australian Democratic Labor
Party (anti-Communist Labor Party splinter group); Peace and Nuclear
Disarmament Action (Nuclear Disarmament Party splinter group)
International organization participation
ANZUS, APEC, AsDB, Australia
Group, BIS, C, CCC, CP, EBRD, ESCAP, FAO, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC,
ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Inmarsat,
Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, NAM (guest), NEA, NSG, OECD,
OPCW, PCA, Sparteca, SPC, SPF, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNFICYP, UNHCR,
UNITAR, UNTAET, UNTSO, UNU, UPU, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTrO, ZC
Diplomatic representation in the US
chief of mission: Ambassador Michael THAWLEY
chancery: 1601 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20036
telephone:  (202) 797-3000
FAX:  (202) 797-3168
consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Honolulu, Los Angeles, New York, and
San Francisco
Diplomatic representation from the US
chief of mission: Ambassador Genta Hawkins HOLMES
embassy: Moonah Place, Yarralumla, Canberra, Australian Capital
Territory 2600
mailing address: APO AP 96549
telephone:  (6) 6214-5600
FAX:  (6) 6214-5970
consulate(s) general: Melbourne, Perth, and Sydney
Flag description
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
Locations:
Home
Afghanistan
Albania
Algeria
American Samoa
Andorra
Angola
Anguilla
Antarctica
Antigua & Barbuda
Arctic Ocean
Argentina
Armenia
Aruba
Ashmore & Cartier Islands
Atlantic Ocean
Australia
Austria
Azerbaijan
Bahrain
Baker Island
Bangladesh
Barbados
Bassas Da India
Belarus
Belgium
Belize
Benin
Bermuda
Bhutan
Bolivia
Bosnia & Herzegovina
Botswana
Bouvet Island
Brazil
British Indian Ocean Territory
British Virgin Islands
Brunei
Bulgaria
Burkina Faso
Burma
Burundi
Cambodia
Cameroon
Canada
Cape Verde
Cayman Islands
Central African Republic
Chad
Chile
China
Christmas Island
Clipperton Island
Colombia
Comoros
Cook Islands
Coral Sea Islands
Costa Rica
Croatia
Cuba
Cyprus
Czech Republic
Denmark
Djibouti
Dominica
Dominican Republic
Ecuador
Egypt
El Salvador
Equatorial Guinea
Eritrea
Estonia
Ethiopia
Europa Island
Faroe Islands
Fiji
Finland
France
French Guiana
French Polynesia
Gabon
Gaza Strip
Georgia
Germany
Ghana
Gibraltar
Glorioso Islands
Greece
Greenland
Grenada
Guadeloupe
Guam
Guatemala
Guernsey
Guinea
Guyana
Haiti
Honduras
Hong Kong
Howland Island
Hungary
Iceland
India
Indian Ocean
Indonesia
Iran
Iraq
Ireland
Israel
Italy
Jamaica
Jan Mayen
Japan
Jarvis Island
Jersey
Johnston Atoll
Jordan
Juan De Nova Island
Kazakhstan
Kenya
Kingman Reef
Kiribati
Korea
Kuwait
Kyrgyzstan
Laos
Latvia
Lebanon
Lesotho
Liberia
Libya
Liechtenstein
Lithuania
Luxembourg
Macau
Madagascar
Malawi
Malaysia
Maldives
Mali
Malta
Marshall Islands
Martinique
Mauritania
Mauritius
Mayotte
Mexico
Midway Islands
Moldova
Monaco
Mongolia
Montserrat
Morocco
Mozambique
Namibia
Nauru
Navassa Island
Netherlands
Netherlands Antilles
New Caledonia
New Zealand
Nicaragua
Niger
Nigeria
Niue
Norfolk Island
Northern Mariana Islands
Norway
Oman
Pacific Ocean
Pakistan
Palau
Palmyra Atoll
Panama
Papua New Guinea
Paracel Islands
Paraguay
Peru
Philippines
Pitcairn Islands
Poland
Portugal
Puerto Rico
Qatar
Reunion
Romania
Rwanda
Saint Helena
Saint Kitts & Nevis
Saint Lucia
Saint Pierre & Miquelon
Saint Vincent & The Grenadines
San Marino
Sao Tome & Principe
Saudi Arabia
Senegal
Serbia & Montenegro
Seychelles
Sierra Leone
Singapore
Slovakia
Solomon Islands
Somalia
South Africa
Southern Ocean
Spain
Spratly Islands
Sri Lanka
Sudan
Suriname
Svalbard
Swaziland
Sweden
Switzerland
Syria
Taiwan
Tajikistan
Tanzania
Thailand
Togo
Tokelau
Tonga
Trinidad & Tobago
Tromelin Island
Tunisia
Turkey
Turkmenistan
Turks & Caicos Islands
Tuvalu
Uganda
Ukraine
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom
United States
Uruguay
Uzbekistan
Vanuatu
Venezuela
Vietnam
Virgin Islands
Wake Island
Wallis & Futuna
West Bank
Western Sahara
World
Yemen
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Zimbabwe