17 September 2009

Famous author defends Australian immigration at debate

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Australian author Tom Keneally defended Australian immigration yesterday during the iQ2 debate in Sydney, saying without migrants Australia would become “less wealthy, less clever, less imaginative and less of a successful polity.”

Emigrate to Australia

An Australian author has defended Australian immigration, saying that those who emigrate to Australia enrich the country.

The author's views were also published yesterday in a large opinion peice in the Sydney Morning Herald.

"It's normal in times of financial uncertainty, or even at other times, to call for reductions in immigrant numbers. It has always been a false response," he wrote in the Sydney Morning Herald.

At iQ2 debate in Sydney, the 74 year old author responded to a speech by Tim Flannery who argued that too many people are immigrating to Australia, and this high immigration rate was having a detrimental effect on the environment and the labour market.

In responce,  Mr Keneally disputed this: “Flannery said our environment demands a reduction in immigration. But it is our misuse of the environment which has created our environmental disasters. ”

"In 2007-08, we took in 129,958 immigrants. That, leaving aside the urgings of some who wish it should be a higher figure, is the minimum number we should take."

Mr Keneally said, first there are moral and humanitarian reasons we cannot ignore but also Australia is enriched by people emigrating to Australia.


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