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Changes introduced to Australian citizenship test

New changes to the Australian citizenship test have been introduced by the country's government, affecting immigrants to the nation from across the globe.
In April this year, prime minister Malcolm Turnbull announced that the government was considering tightening the citizenship test to help ensure that everyone who moves to Australia from elsewhere in the world holds the same values and wants to contribute to the country's society for a shared purpose.
From this week onwards, all those wanting to gain Australian citizenship will be required to sit an English language test, which will measure their competency in reading, writing, speaking and listening to English. All migrants to the country aged over 16 and below 60 will need to take the test without help from family members or other sources.
Aside from children and the elderly, the only other people exempt from this new requirement will be those with significant hearing, speech or sight impairments or with a mental disability.
The change to the citizenship test comes as the Australian government looks to ensure the nation is only welcoming people it believes will make a positive contribution to society, in part due to concerns about terrorism.
Australia's immigration minister Peter Dutton commented: "The Australian community expects that aspiring citizens demonstrate their allegiance to our country, their commitment to live in accordance with Australian laws and values, and be willing to integrate into and become contributing members of the Australian community.
"The measures in this bill will ensure we continue to welcome people committed to the success of our great nation, enriching our society and building our economic prosperity."
Other changes to the citizenship test include a new requirement for candidates to demonstrate that they are attempting to integrate into their local community and are displaying Australian values.
In addition, the period of permanent residency has been changed from just one year to four.

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