The education demands of China are continuing to grow inline with the ongoing development of the economy. As demonstrated in previous articles, Australia has succeeded in attracting a range of Chinese university students over the past decade and this has continued to grow, although at much smaller levels than in previous periods. China still remains the most important education market for Australian Universities. But are Australian education institutions reaching the opportunities inherent in the Chinese market?
International students have an overwhelming positive economic impact on Australian cities, and particularly inner city urban development, and vibrancy. Economic analysis in recent years has suggested that international students have an annual economic impact of $17.5 billion on the Australian economy. There has consequently been considerable discussion about expanding international student numbers and attracting more students to Australian institutions.
This is a good story of Australia’s position as an education destination of choice for Chinese students, however they may demonstrate a emerging challenge for the Australian education industry to continue to reap the economic benefits of Chinese students in Australia. This leads to an important question about whether Australia, and its key government and institutional stakeholders in the education sector are effectively approaching market capacity in what can realistically be achieved from Chinese students to Australia. Does Australia and its education institutions need to look at adapting its engagement model with China to train more students?