Year Book Australia is the principal reference work produced by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). It provides a comprehensive and detailed statistical overview of various aspects of the economy and social conditions in Australia. In addition, it contains descriptive matter dealing with Australia’s government, international relations, defence, social security, geography and climate.
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.
In recent years, Year Books have had an underlying theme for the articles contained within. This 86th edition of Year Book Australia has a number of articles which address aspects of Australia's Indigenous population.
The statistics contained in this edition are the most recent available at the time of its preparation. In many cases, the ABS web site <http://www.abs.gov.au> and the web sites of other organisations provide access to more recent statistics. The ABS Catalogue of Publications and Products (1101.0) lists all current publications of the ABS.
Further information on the operations of government and non-government organisations referred to in this edition of the Year Book, including their administrative and legislative background, may be obtained from their individual web sites, the addresses of which are provided throughout and at the end of chapters of the Year Book.
ABS publications draw extensively on information provided freely by individuals, businesses, governments and other organisations. Their continued cooperation is very much appreciated.
Particular thanks and appreciation are extended to those Australian Government and other organisations which have kindly supplied material for inclusion in this 2004 edition of Year Book Australia.
I also take the opportunity to extend my thanks to the many ABS staff who contributed to the preparation and production of the Year Book.
Australian Bureau of Statistics