People in Tasmania

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Tasmania's present population is 477,675. The majority of Tasmanians live in in or around the major population centres: 194,166 in the greater Hobart area, 98,160 in the greater Launceston area, and 78,147 in the Burnie-Devonport region. Although births (5909) exceeded deaths (3557) in the year of these statistics, Tasmania's population is currently declining due to emigration.

The great majority of Tasmanians are caucasion, and mainly British descent at that. As a general rule, Tasmania has been less influneced by twentieth century migration that the mainland of Australia due to it's relative isolation. Residents of other states are occasionaly liable to make disparraging jokes in this regard, which intimate at the relatively intertwined lineage of many Tasmanian families. Nevertheless Tasmania has received waves of immigration in the past, especially post-WWII immigrants of Eastern Europe who were attracted for labour on the hydroelectric schemes then under commision.

As may occur with many small and established regions, Tasmania has developed it's own internal rivalries. Residents of the South may pride themselves on living in the earlier settled regions of the state, and having Hobart as the state's capital and largest city. Northern residnts will claim that theirs is the more economically productive region of the state, and note that these areas were not originally established as centres for incarceration of England's criminals. Such parochial rivalries are played out by snobbery betwwen the main centres of Hobart and Launceston, patronage of different newspapers or TV stations, and the contest of differing sporting teams in sports such as Australian-Rules Football.

By national standards Tasmania is not a wealthy state, and the last decade has, if anything, exacerbated this disparity, Tasmania suffers from high levels of unemployment and an overall declining population. However, the cost of living is also lower in Tasmania, especially housing costs (petrol and other imports can be more expensive). Tasmania does not lack for a wealthy class, from established fortunes - some dating back to landed gentry of colonial days - to chiefs of industry or government, and new entrepreneurs and professionals. On the other hand, there are many communities, suburbs of the larger cities and especially some isolated towns in rural areas, that are face particular hardships due to recent closures of som large industries. Nevertheless, as a whole the Tasmanian community is known to be welcoming and supportive, and travellers are sure to find assistance and friendship wherever they choose to go.

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