Tough immigration rules could prevent Oz education institutions from recruiting Indian students

September 3rd, 2008 - 6:08 pm ICT by ANI  

Melbourne, Sept.3 (ANI): Australia’’s 12.5 billion dollar education export industry is likely to take a major hit with the countrys immigration authorities deciding to tighten laws for the recruitment of Indian students.

According to The Australian, all universities are likely to urge their foreign students, including Indian students to get their visa applications lodged and processed as per the new rules.

A spokesman of the Department of Immigration and Citizenship, however, said: “Gnuine applicants had nothing to fear from the changes.

According to the latest official data, there are 65,000 Indian students in Australia in the year to June, mostly in vocational education.

Although they make up a smaller market than the Chinese, the Indian growth rate is much higher.

Student numbers from India grew by 55 per cent, compared with 19 per cent from China.

The China market, however, stands to benefit from the latest revision of immigration risk, which is based on factors such as rates of document fraud, visa overstay and asylum claims, as well as applications for non-skilled residency for a spouse, for example.

Another beneficiary of the immigration change is Saudi Arabia, which has been reclassified as representing the lowest risk level. Qatar, Oman and Brazil also shifted to the lowest of the five possible levels of immigration risk category. Twenty-three countries now have that rating. Their students are eligible to make online applications offshore.

In all, 43 countries have been judged less risky. India was not alone in moving up the risk scale. Visa applicants from Colombia, Egypt, Ghana, Jordan, Nigeria, Sri Lanka, Romania and Zimbabwe will have to do more to show they are genuine students.

They will have to give extra evidence of their capacity to support themselves financially, especially with savings histories.

The status of these nine countries had been changed “to combat increased levels of immigration risk”, the department spokesperson said.

The risk levels are set across various sectors, including English language courses, vocational education and higher degrees. The higher risk assessment affects all sectors of the Indian education market, which moved up by one level.

India, China and Nepal continued to be strong growth markets, but those such as Japan, Hong Kong and Taiwan continued to decline. (ANI)

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