The Commonwealth of Australia is an independent Western democracy with three tiers of government – federal, state and local. In terms of governance, the nation’s institutions and practices reflect British and North American models but remain uniquely Australian.

Australia and Queensland

  • The Commonwealth of Australia is made up of six states and two mainland territories, with a system of government based on the liberal democratic tradition. The Federal Government is based on a popularly elected Parliament with two chambers – the House of Representatives and the Senate.
  • Australia has a written Constitution that sets out the functions of the Australian Government. As a constitutional monarchy, Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain is recognised as the head of state. Her representative in Australia is the Governor-General.

Political environment

  • Australia is one of the most politically and economically stable countries in the world, consistently rating as a safe place to live and work.
  • Australia boasts a stable, open, progressive political and regulatory framework with an efficient and transparent legal framework. 


  • Brisbane has one of the largest city councils in the Asia Pacific region; it’s recognised as one of the top 150 corporations in Australia in terms of size of turnover and asset base.
  • Brisbane City Council delivers core local government services including roads and infrastructure, bus and ferry services, environment protection and local parks, as well as neighbourhood planning.
  • The current Lord Mayor of Brisbane is Graham Quirk.

For further information on federal, state and local government visit the following websites:

Australian Government

Queensland Government

Brisbane City Council