i'm also new and have been searching for a new dslr for a beginner. http://reviews.cnet.com/best-prosumer-dslr-cameras/?tag=rb_content;contentNav
i'm not sure exactly how much the exchange rate is but I have been looking at the Canon Rebel T1i ( i think it's called Eos 500d elsewhere) and the nikon d5000.
Out of all the reviews I've read, these two got the best reviews for beginners.
Also, it's around 800 with the lens in the states, so money to buy memory card, equipment etc.)
IMO Aside from picture quality because they are similar and unnoticeable for an amateur like me. Because of the LCD screen and video capabilities, I'm leaning towards the Canon.