02 January 2008

Australian immigration to review citizenship test

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The recently introduced Australian citizenship test is to undergo a review, the new Australian immigration minister has confirmed. The latest figures show that over one fifth of the 10,636 people who have sat the test so far failed to achieve the 60 per cent pass mark.

Minister Chris Evans said yesterday that the government intends to look at the test because of these results. "The citizenship test should be about increasing awareness of citizen's responsibilities and of the Australian way of life," he commented.

It is possible that significant changes could be made to the test, which was drafted under the influence of former premier John Howard. However, the new prime minister, Kevin Rudd supported the test while in opposition as well as further plans to introduce a values statement to be signed by people taking up Australian immigration agreeing to abide by the Australian way of life.

People with Australian visas can apply for citizenship after four years, entitling them to vote in federal elections and making them eligible for certain public sector jobs.

Australia needs skilled immigrants: Anyone applying for an Australian visa should begin by completing the Australian Visa Bureau's online Australian visa application to see if they meet the Australian visa requirements.

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