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During the 1980s the most dramatic rate of growth in immigration to Australia came from those born in Taiwan (Khoo et al. From the mid-1980s to 1993 Hong Kong and China were among the top ten source countries; In the four year period from 1989 to 1993 Hong Kong was second only to the United Kingdom as a source of immigrants (see also BIR 1992b).
The significant increase in ethnic Chinese immigrants in Australia was reflected in 1991 census figures (BIPR 1993b; Ho 1994), which ranked China as the ninth most common place of birth for Australians (0.5 per cent of the population) and Hong Kong the fifteenth place (0.3 per cent of the population).
Large numbers of men from China came to work in the goldfields in Victoria, hoping to return to their homeland when they had made enough money (Wang 1988).
Where both parents have returned to work in their original countries, the teenage children left behind to attend school in Australia are referred to as 'parachute children' .
Despite the diversity of their countries of origin and socio-economic backgrounds, Chinese families in Australia share, to varying degrees, a heritage of traditional Chinese values handed down through the generations (Chu and Carew 1990).
The 1986 census listed a dozen countries which contributed more than a hundred Chinese immigrants to Australia, making the Chinese community the most diverse in their countries of origin of all immigrant communities in Australia (Kee 1992).
Kee's analysis further indicated a bimodal distribution in the socio-economic profile of the Chinese in Australia.
Arguably, Chinese culture may be specified as the culture of the family.