Historically, more people immigrate to, than emigrate from, Australia. Immigration to modern Australia began in 1788, when the first British colony “Crown of New South Wales” was established. Like Canada, currently Australia became designated as the country of immigration.

Since the end of World War II the Australian population has quadrupled due to immigration incentive programs. Hundreds of thousands of immigrants from all over Europe and the Middle East arrived in Australia. After the abolition of the “White Australia” policy in 1973, which excluded non-European immigration, numerous government initiatives promoted ethnic harmony based on a multicultural policy.

According to the 2016 Census, there were 23.4 million people living in Australia. In 2016, 49% of Australians had either been born overseas (28.5%) or one or both parents had been born overseas and (20.5%). Persons born in the UK (3.9%) continued to be the largest group of overseas-born residents, followed by persons born in New Zealand (2.2%), China (2.2%) and India (1.9%). The 2016 Census counted 15 806 persons who have born in Portugal (0.1%).

In 2015 United Nations estimated 526 579 Australians living outside Australia (2.2%), which indicates that outgoing movements are less relevant than the ingoing’s. Australian emigrants are based manly in UK (26%), EUA (15%) and New Zealand (12%). Portugal represents just 0,3% of the Australian outgoing flows during 21st century.