A Chinese Australian (澳大利亚华人) is an Australian of Chinese heritage. In the 2006 Australian Census, 669,890 Australian residents identified themselves as having Chinese ancestry, either alone or with another ancestry. The early history of Chinese Australians had involved significant immigration from villages of the Pearl River Delta in Southern China. Less well known are the kind of society Chinese Australians came from, the families they left behind and what their intentions were in coming. Many Chinese were lured to Australia by the gold rush.
The White Australia Policy of the early 20th Century severely curtailed the development of the Chinese communities in Australia. However, since the advent of Multiculturalism as a government policy in the 1970s, many Chinese from Hong Kong, Mainland China, Taiwan, and Southeast Asia (Malaysia, Vietnam, Cambodia, Indonesia and the Philippines) have immigrated to Australia.