Reopening “just in time” for Khoo Sulyn but Australia missed the boat

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Jake Foster, chief commercial officer of international education agent firm AECC Global, said there was an immediate spike in interest following the government announcement on Monday, but the industry would not fully rebound until the mid-2022.

“Students who plan to start their studies in early 2022 only have a few weeks left to complete their enrollment,” he said.

“Mars has traditionally been one of the greatest academic inputs for new international students, [but] Given the late timing of the government’s announcement, we believe we won’t see significant new inflows of international students to Australia until July 2022.

“There is now serious global competition for international students, with countries like Canada and the UK rolling out the red carpet. “

For Khoo Sulyn, 21, Australia’s decision to reopen the borders to international students came just in time.

The Monash University business student, who had spent the last year studying from her home in Kuala Lumpur, was considering moving to the UK if she hadn’t been able to come to Australia in early 2022.

“So when the Australian government announced it was reopening, it was a great relief for me,” Ms. Khoo said.

“I’ve been trying to go to Australia to continue my studies at Monash University for over a year now and it seems unreal to be there, hopefully in less than 90 days.”

Ms Khoo said that upon graduation she would return to Malaysia and work to support her family business.

Flow effects

Phil Honeywood, chief executive of the International Education Association of Australia, said a long list of logistical issues, such as visa processing times and the availability of flights to Australia, could affect the number of students arriving for the first semester.

“It’s one thing to open the floodgates, but it’s another to make sure all the logistics are aligned,” he said.

At this point, only fully vaccinated students coming to Victoria, NSW and ACT can arrive without having to quarantine themselves. Those traveling to other states will either have to detour through one of the eastern states or self-quarantine at a cost of around $ 3,000.

Mr Foster said another logistical issue would be the processing of vaccine certificates, which could be extremely difficult to verify depending on where they were issued.

“It will be interesting to see how the Australian Border Force recognizes vaccine certificates from countries like the Philippines, where vaccine certificates, even for Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines, are in some cases just one piece of paper that differs from region to region. he said.

Martin Foo from S&P Global said the big question would be whether there would be enough new beginnings to replace students who had dropped out or graduated.

“Most people think the number of launches won’t be enough at this point to replace completions,” he said. “So there will very likely be a further decline in registrations in 2022 compared to 2021.”

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