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1301.0 - Year Book Australia, 2001  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 25/01/2001   
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MEDIA RELEASE

January 25, 2001
Embargoed: 11:30 AM (AEST)
10/2001

A Unique Look at Australia: Today and During the Last Century

Australians seeking to understand our last 100 years will find plenty of food for thought in a major reference work released today.

It is the Centenary of Federation edition of Year Book Australia, the ABS's principle reference work, which was launched at Old Parliament House in Canberra today by the President of the Senate, Senator Margaret Reid. The Year Book gives a comprehensive view of Australia as it enters its second century of Federation, with fascinating keyhole glimpses of the last century of our history.

"There is plenty of material in the Year Book for people keen to compare life today with the way Australians lived in 1901," Senator Reid said. "Of special interest, for example, is the article on wages and prices, and there are some surprises there when 1901 prices are adjusted to take account of general inflation.

"For example, a dozen eggs at the equivalent of 12 cents in 1901 translates into six dollars, or more than twice today's price, while a loaf of bread at the equivalent of 2 cents in 1901 equates to one dollar, or less than half today's price, and a kilogram of bacon at 19 cents comes out about the same as today at $9.50.

"All these glimpses of our nation-building past are fascinating and informative, and make 2001 Year Book Australia a vital reference for Australians in all walks of life: decision-makers, the education sector, community organisations, journalists, researchers - all will benefit from having this highly readable source on all things Australian, today and during the past century, near to hand," Senator Reid said.

The Australian Statistician, Mr Dennis Trewin, said 2001 Year Book Australia was the ABS's contribution to the Centenary of Federation.

"The first Official Year Book of the Commonwealth was published in 1908, although individual Australian States and colonies had been producing year books for several decades previously," he said.

"For this edition the ABS invited a small number of distinguished Australians, authorities in their fields, to contribute significant articles in their areas of interest."

Mr Trewin said the CD-ROM version of the Year Book, launched at the same time as the printed publication, contained additional material, including a selection of special Year Book articles published down the decades.

"These give a special insight into the issues that concerned Australians at various times during the last century, and make fascinating reading," he said.

2001 Year Book Australia (cat. no. 1301.0) is available from ABS Bookshops. An online version of the Yearbook called Australia Now can be found on this website. If you wish to purchase a copy of the Yearbook, contact the ABS Bookshop in your capital city.

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