New South Wales

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A masterpiece by French impressionist Paul Cezanne has been bought for a record $16.2 million by the Art Gallery of NSW, in its most ambitious purchase ever.

New South Wales (abbreviated as NSW) is Australia's oldest and most populous state. It was the first British colony in what is now Australia, established in 1788. The capital city is Sydney.

Originally, New South Wales included the whole of the Australian mainland east of current Western Australia. When new colonies were founded in Brisbane, Adelaide and Melbourne, sections of New South Wales were carved out to be adminstered by the new colonies as Queensland, South Australia and Victoria, respectively. The Northern Territory was also carved out to be adminstered initially by the South Australian government. Modern day New South Wales is the fourth largest of Australia's six states.

The current boundaries of the state are with Victoria to the south, South Australia to the west and Queensland to the north. It also completely surrounds the Australian Capital Territory and the land side of the Jervis Bay Territory.


New South Wales has its own Bicameral Parliament with the Lower house called the New South Wales Legislative Assembly and the Upper house called the New South Wales Legislative Council. The lower house has 93 members representing each of the 93 single member electoral districts, in a style similar to the Australian House of Representatives. The upper house has 42 members and using proportional representation just like the Australian Senate has more members from minor parties.

Current Composition

Legislative Assembly -- 93 members

Legislative Council -- 42 members

The NSW ALP branch is currently in power but have been heavily criticized in the media and in the general public due to factional wars and the debt accumulated in recent years. There have been 4 premiers in as many years and on 3rd December 2009 Kristina Keneally was elected leader of the Labor Party and ultimately premier beating Nathan Rees who himself succeeded Morris Iemma after he resigned when his bill to privatize the states electricity was rejected by the majority of delegates within his own party. [1] She is the first American born and first woman to hold that position. In recent times successive polls have placed them at low levels and in some case close to 25% on primary votes. [2] [3]. A recent finding has labelled the economy of NSW the worst in the country, having grown at only 0.2% compared to the national average of 1.1%. The share of the national economy has fallen from 36% from the Olympics of 2000 held in Sydney to less than one third at 32% in June, 2009 [4]