Australia has been a stand-out economic performer for more than two decades, having enjoyed uninterrupted economic growth since 1991. The underlying justifications for considering Australia as a resource-based economy are historical and international. Historically, the discovery and exploitation of primary commodities were crucial to initially stimulating British settlement of the continent and promoting economic development and population growth. The share of trade in the economy began to increase measurably, reflecting its much greater openness to global markets. Australia's policy history strongly suggests that economic liberalism - with a nod to sector-blind innovation policy - is more likely to guide government policy is more likely to guide government policy than an active attention to economic diversification. The dominant narrative has been that Australia's success has been, and will continue to be, based on economic liberalisation and the adoption of sound economic policy fundamentals.