There have been manifold points of weakness in the global economy in recent years: Australia has shared many of the developed countries’ points of vulnerability.
No other developed economy of comparable size has benefited as much as Australia from the easy international movement of people – for business, pleasure, education, and to build new lives as migrants.
Our economy’s relatively small size and dependence on exporting primary resources means we have more to gain than most other countries from open borders and international trade.
For any single country, the trigger can be other countries’ recession and the associated reduced demand for imports, or the associated financial stress.
That’s true even in Australia, one of just two developed countries (Korea being the other) that avoided a GFC-driven recession (two successive quarters of declining output).