Aborigines moved to Australia from Asia at least 50 thousand years ago. Before the arrival of Europeans, they used stone tools, hunted and gathered natural food. The maximum estimate of their number at that time was up to 750 thousand people. They were divided into about 30 tribes and spoke about 500 languages. In the 17th century the coast of the north and west of the continent was explored by Dutch sailors. In 1642, Abel Tasman discovered the current island of Tasmania. The real development of the continent by the British began with the famous J. Cook, whose expedition moored to the eastern shores of the unknown Southern land (in Latin Terra Incognito Australis, hence the name Australia) not far from the future Sydney Bay in 1770. Cook declared the lands he discovered to be the British possession of New South Wales. All R. January 1788 to the shores of Australia arrived the so-called. The first fleet with 750 convicts on board and their guards – British troops. On 26 January (Australia Day), they began landing in what is now Sydney Harbor. The head of the expedition, naval officer A. Phillip, became the first Governor General of New South Wales. The sending of convicts to the Australian colonies continued for several decades, but free settlers from the British Isles also arrived in increasing numbers. In the beginning. 19th century exploration of the interior of the continent unfolded, which continued with varying success until the 1930s. Following New South Wales, other colonies formed – Tasmania, Western Australia, Victoria, South Australia. The “gold rush” in the 1850s and 60s had a great influence on the economic development of the colonies. in Victoria, it gave at that time up to 1/3 of the world’s gold production. The main features of English capitalism were transferred to the continent: the socio-economic structure, technical and technological achievements, the formation of the party-political system began. In 1855, the secret ballot rule was introduced in Victoria for the first time in the world, known as the “Australian vote”. According to localcollegeexplorer.com, a distinctive feature of the colonies is a strong trade union movement. Still in con. 19th century Here the 8-hour working day was established. During the 2nd half. 19th century Australian colonies began to increasingly feel the need for economic and political unification. This process formally ended with the adoption by the British Parliament in July 1900 of a legislative act (the text of the Constitution of a single state prepared by Australian politicians) on the creation, from January 1, 1901, of a single, federal, self-governing, with broad powers in the field of internal development of the colony of Great Britain – the Commonwealth of Australia. At the same time, in 1901, the Northern Territory was allocated from South Australia under the control of the federal government (since 1978 it received the status of self-governing). By 1927, the capital of the Federation, Canberra, was specially built (which replaced the temporary capital, Melbourne). It was singled out as an independent administrative territory (since 1988 it received the status of self-governing). In 1931, the British Parliament adopted a legislative act – the so-called. Statute of Westminster. According to it, Australia received the status of a dominion within the British Commonwealth of Nations, gained complete independence in internal and external affairs while maintaining formal ties with the British crown (the head of state is the English monarch, residents of dominions are British subjects, etc.). On the side of the mother country, Australian troops participated in the Anglo-Boer War, in the 1st World War, fighting mainly in Europe, the Middle East and North Africa. There were also several clashes with the German Navy in the area of the island of New Guinea. In the 2nd World War, Australian units took an active part not only in Europe and Africa, but also in East Asia and the Pacific, protecting their own security from Japanese aggression. As one of the victorious powers in 1945, Australia became one of the founding states of the UN. After the war, given its lessons from the point of view of the country’s security, especially the small population and the underdevelopment of industry, The Australian government implemented a program of widespread immigration from continental Europe and took steps to accelerate the industrialization of the country through increased protection of the domestic market. Economic and political relations with Great Britain gradually became less close. The Australian Citizenship Act was passed in 1948 and the National Flag Act in 1953.
The accession of Great Britain to the EEC in 1973 stimulated the renaming of the British Queen in relation to Australia to the Queen of Australia. The decision of the Governor-General in 1975 to exercise his constitutional right to dissolve parliament and call snap elections caused an acute domestic political crisis, which further weakened the already formal ties with the crown. In 1984, “God Save the Queen” became the Australian national anthem, “Go Australia Beautiful”. Since the passage of the Australian Act in 1986 by the Federal Parliament, any legislation passed by the British Parliament does not extend its jurisdiction to Australia. The Privy Council in London finally lost the appellate functions of the last stage of the court, and this right completely passed to the High (Supreme) Court of Australia. In the beginning. 1990s the government (Labour) of the country began to promote the idea of turning Australia into a republic. Although it did not receive a majority of votes in the referendum on November 6, 1999, the country’s movement towards one or another system of republican government is objective. The scandalous resignation of Governor General P.J. Holingworth in May 2003 again sharpened the question of the future of the government-general system in Australia. In the post-war period, Australia’s foreign policy and foreign economic relations began to increasingly shift towards East Asia and the Pacific. The United States is becoming the main military-political ally and foreign economic partner of the country. A symbol of this was the conclusion in 1951 of the ANZUS pact, a military-political alliance between the United States, Australia, and New Zealand. Australia supported Washington’s policy of “rolling back and containing” communism in Asia, and small continents of Australian troops took part in the Korean and Vietnam Wars. A symbolic act of the significance of economic ties with the United States was the renaming of the Australian pound into the Australian dollar in 1966 under Prime Minister R. Menzies, who called himself “British to the laces of his shoes.” At the same time, the sphere of independent foreign policy and especially foreign economic interests of Australia expanded. In the beginning. 1970s the so-called. the “White Australia” policy, which for decades imposed restrictions on Asian immigration, Australian troops were withdrawn from Vietnam, and the country turned to the active development of ties with the countries of East Asia and the Asia-Pacific region as a whole. Even before the 2nd World War, some British colonies in Oceania (the largest of them Papua New Guinea), which had already gained independence from Australia, entered the sphere of “responsibility” of the dominion. In 1947, Australia and a number of other colonial powers formed the South Pacific Commission, which since 1997 has been renamed the Pacific Community. It includes former and current owners of colonial possessions in Oceania, independent, semi-independent and dependent states and territories of this part of the world. In 1971, the South Pacific Forum (from October 2000 – the Forum of the Pacific Islands) was formed, which, in addition to Australia and New Zealand, includes only the independent states of Oceania. Through these regional organizations and on a bilateral basis, Australia provides significant assistance to the socio-economic and political development of the oceanic states.