Australia's education exports reach AUS$15.7 billion

04, December, 2014

Onshore international education activity in Australia contributed AUS$15.7 billion to the economy in 2013/14, a 4.9 per cent increase compared with 2012/13 and the largest amount since 2009/10, according to figures recently released by government body Australian Education International (AEI).

Education export income by state and territory, 2013-14. Source - Research Snapshot, Export income to Australia from international education activity in 2013-14, Australian Education International

The AUS$15.7 billion comprises spending on tuition fees, accommodation, goods and services by onshore international students in Australia. The education-related export sector is Australia’s largest services export.

Higher education was the largest sector, contributing AUS$10.8 billion in export income, 68.3 per cent of total onshore earnings, followed by: VET, generating AUS$2.5 billion and 16 per cent; Elicos with AUS$889 million (5.6 per cent); the non-award sector with AUS$620 million (3.9 per cent); and secondary schools with AUS$589 million (3.7 per cent).

In terms of export income by state, New South Wales was the largest export earner with AUS$5.7 billion, followed by Victoria (AUS$4.7 billion) and Queensland (AUS$2.4 billion).

China alone accounted for AUS$4.1 billion of Australia’s onshore international education export income – a quarter of the total and 4.6 per cent increase compared with the previous year – followed by India (AUS$1.4 billion) and Vietnam (AUS$939 million). Nine of the top ten countries recorded increases while the other, fifth-placed Malaysia, contributed an identical amount to 2012/13.

A separate research paper released by AEI showed that Australian universities provided AUS$364.4 million in scholarships and stipends for international students in 2013, while the Australian government contributed a total of AUS$362.2 million via Endeavour Scholarships, International Postgraduate Research Scholarships and Australia Awards scholarships and fellowships from the Department of Foreign Trade and Affairs.

At the time of writing, AUS$1 = US$0.83


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