Education is Australia’s third biggest export category

Education: Australia’s third-largest export

Australia has a global reputation for offering first-class education and study. It boasts some of the best universities in the world and is the number two global destination for international students.

The nation’s third-largest export, education is a foundation of the Australian economy and a significant contributor to its ongoing growth.

In fact, the impact of international education on the Australian economy increased by 22% in 2017, reaching $32.3 billion dollars.

“The outstanding education that our universities provide to some of the best and brightest students from right around the world is a vital part of Australia’s economy,” Universities Australia Chief Executive Belinda Robinson said.

But why is Australia’s exported education so successful?

“Australia is a beacon for international students because they know they’ll get a world-class education, global alumni networks, a great student experience and lifelong ties and friendships with Australia,” Robinson said.

Beyond its contribution to the nation’s economy, exporting education helps to establish powerful collaborations and relationships with other countries and strengthens diplomatic and economic ties between Australia and the rest of the world.

With the value placed on Australia’s exported education neglecting to include adjacent revenue streams – such as intellectual property royalties, income from correspondence courses and consultancy services – it’s possible that the total value of the nation’s education exports is even higher than the estimated 32.3 billion.

Australia’s international student community is as diverse as it is talented, with close to 200 nationalities represented. More than 50% of international students in Australia arrive from five markets in particular: China, 30%; India, 11%; Nepal, 5%; Malaysia, 4%; and Brazil, 4%.

Contributing factors to Australia’s immense success as an education exporter include the high likelihood of networking opportunities and job prospects, as well as the country’s reputation as a safe destination. In order to continue growing, it’s crucial that Australia maintain its high-quality standards of living.

The 2016 Hobson International Student Survey found that of the 65,000 international students surveyed 93% listed safety as a key reason for studying in Australia – making it the “safest and most welcoming country for international students”.