Why are Nepali and other International Students Shunning Australia?

Over the last decade, Australia has turned Education into a money-making machine. Australia has used permanent residency to lure a majority of the foreign students (including yours truly) here and has been very successful at it. Last year Australia raked in more than $18 billion making it one of the major exports.

But not any more! Over the past 18 months a number of factors have led to a fall in the number of overseas students wanting to study in Australia. Some of the main factors are:
  1. An Australian qualification no longer guarantees one permanent residency which is a major turn off for international students, particularly from developing countries. 
  2. Strict rules regarding student visas. As a simple example, in order to do a undergraduate course at a Group of Eight university, a Nepali student would need to show upto $150,000 in the bank for six months before the date of the visa application. The same student would require to show a deposit of about $40,000 held in the account for 28 days to apply to Britian.
  3. A stronger Australian dollar, which is again hurting students from developing countries like our own,
  4. Attacks on foreign students, especially our neighbours which is also turning them off
Given these factors, it is estimated that by 2015 foreign student enrolments in higher education could plunge to about 148,000 from about 214,000 this year, resulting in 36,182 fewer jobs and a collapse of $7 billion in university revenues.

So what is the new Government going to do about this? Let's wait and see! My advice to Nepali aspirants is look to other countries such as New Zealand or Canada! Both have very small Nepali student numbers and both offer Permanent Residency!