International students may be able to return to Australia later this year according to Treasurer of New South Wales Domenic Perrottet, who says the NSW government has “the capability and processes in place to allow international students to return safely when restrictions allow”.
Purpose-built student accommodation providers have been invited to submit expressions of interest to help students return to Australia under the current quarantine regime, “with a view of forming a panel of eligible providers to house international students coming into NSW for the 14-day quarantine period”.
The advertisement was run by the NSW Treasury and closes on April 12th, possibly because the NSW government intends to start bringing students into the country in late 2021.
Minister for Education Alan Tudge has indicated the Australian government is open to receiving proposals from jurisdictions and universities to ensure the safe return of students to Australia, “Of course, there is still the opportunity to bring students back in small, phased pilots,” he said.
This is good news for New South Wales Education providers who have seen a great reduction in foreign student numbers due to Covid.
The pandemic has devastated the overseas education industry in Australia, which is worth 14.6 billion dollars and supplies over 95,000 jobs in New South Wales alone.
Victoria submitted a proposal to reserve 120 places in the state’s cap on arrivals after recommencing hotel quarantine on the 8th of April which was rejected by the federal government.
With only 40 international students arriving in Victoria in February 2021, compared to over 40,000 students arriving at the same time last year, Australia is starting to feel the effects of the pandemic on its economy.
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