Decrease in the number of international students affects the UK economy

Published On: 21 Jul 2012

 | Last Updated On: 21 Jul 2012

Visa restrictions, increase in tuition fees, and a murder of a student belonging to India are wavering UK’s reputation as the one of the top destinations to study abroad. This could result in a heavy loss to the economy and to universities that rely on the revenue of the students.

UK earns approximately 5 billion pounds a year in revenue through foreign students coming for higher education, but factors such as high education funds and stringent regulation on visa may risk the future of universities in the country. Not only is the economy at risk but also the reputation of UK’s Universities as being world class for higher studies.

It is estimated that Britain could procure a loss of 8 billion pounds in income of which 2.3 billion would prove a loss to the economy and a loss of 5.66 billion pounds in revenue gained from fees. The ministers of UK are apprehensive and are considering relaxing the regulatory issues on immigration. Sources from the universities stated that the government is giving more importance to Home Office than the Department of Innovation and Skills that promotes recruiting of international students.

Sources also expressed that the negative portrayal of immigrants in media also plays a part in the decrease of international student applications in UK. The media should reveal the positive impact these foreign students have on the economy. UK is perceived the second most popular destination for higher studies, however there is a recent decline in the figure.

Recent figures from Universities and Colleges Admissions Service reveal that there has been a drop of 11% in the number students applying to universities in Britain. They find it cheaper to study in their home countries as UK universities have yearly rise of 9000 pounds in tuition fees.  Although the number of International applicants is still rising by 13%; it is believed that the stringent rules that limit visa applicants in UK will start making a difference on the economy.

Source: The Independent

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