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- Australia & Pacific Political & Social Issues
Australia is located entirely in the southern hemisphere, between the Indian and the Pacific Oceans. It lies in 10 º S to 40 ° S latitude and 114º E to 154 º E longitude. The area of this continent is 7,686,420 sq km. It is the smallest continent of the world. It is about six times smaller than Asia, and about three times smaller than North America. Australia is surrounded by the Pacific Ocean in the east, the Indian Ocean in the West and north and the Antarctica to its south.
The estimated population of Australia by 18th march 2009 is 21,542,000. The majority of people are Britishers. Most of them live along the east coast and south coast. The north and north-east coast is thinly populated due to the tropical climate. The western part is largely uninhabited due to desert. In Australia, 85% of the people live in the towns and cities. Only 15% live in the rural ares. Most densely populated cities are Sydney, Perth, Brisbane, Melbourne,etc.
Australia is not suitable for agriculture due to its climate and topography. Wheat is the major crop of Australia. Other crops include maize, paddy and sugar cane.
Australia is famous for sheep rearing for wool, and cattle rearing for beef and dairy products. Australia alone produces 30% of the world's total wool and 95% of the total output is exported.
Australia is very rich in minerals and raw materials. It is highly industrialized country of the Southern hemisphere. Iron and steel, Aluminium, motor vehicles and ship-building are the major industries of Australia.
As Australia lies in the southern hemisphere it's climate is just opposite to that of the Northern hemisphere. Since, Nepal lies in the Northern Hemisphere, when it is winter in Nepal, it is summer in Australia. Similarly when it is winter in Australia it is summer in Nepal.