Minister for Education and Training, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP is urging Australians to have a say on our most successful services export – international education.
Minister Pyne has today released for consultation the Draft National Strategy for International Education, which puts Australia on a path for sustainable growth in this key area of the economy.
The national strategy is a first for the Australian Government and brings together key portfolios including Education, Foreign Affairs, Trade, Immigration, Industry and Science in a united effort.
“International education is a $16.3 billion export industry that supports 130,000 jobs nationally,” Minister Pyne said.
“After a period of decline under the previous Government, the Coalition took immediate steps to reinvigorate international education and student numbers are growing rapidly again.
“I can announce today that in 2014 Australia hosted the highest number of international higher education students we have ever seen. The growth in international student numbers has added $1 billion and 5000 new jobs to our national economy.
“International education is one of Australia’s greatest under-the-radar export success stories. It has been estimated that over the next decade international education could double in value to the Australian economy, creating tens of thousands of local jobs.
“With many traditional industries under pressure, Australia is well placed to harness the knowledge boom, meet international demand for education and prepare people for professional jobs globally.
“But the benefits of international education extend beyond being a mainstay of our economy.
“International education nurtures cross-cultural networks in our region and strengthens our institutions across teaching and research. On top of that, international students bring enormous benefits to our economy, cities and towns.
“Wherever there is a university campus, a TAFE, a college or a school that offers international services, the local economy is healthier.”
The draft strategy is structured around three broad pillars:
Getting the fundamentals right: Strong national policies for education, training and research will ensure we keep our reputation as one of the world’s leading providers of education.
Reaching out to the world: International education includes all aspects of our global teaching and research engagement. This includes Australian students studying abroad and engaging through language study. It includes research collaboration and the two-way movement of researchers, academics and professionals.
Staying competitive: Working together to provide international students with a great value package. High quality education experiences that utilise new technologies, offer strong and safe consumer protections and real work experience in professional and skilled employment are essential.
“A national strategy with clear goals, strategic actions and measures of success will help set a clear path for sustainable growth and strengthen all aspects of our international education and research engagement,” Mr Pyne said.
“We want to send a message to students from around the world that Australia welcomes them and will help them achieve their aspirations.”
To view the Draft National Strategy for International Education and make a submission visit: www.internationaleducation.gov.au.
Feedback is requested by 29 May 2015.