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Higher Education is the bread winner in the international education industry in Australia

It’s widely known that the international education industry generates a significant contribution to the Australian economy. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) during 2016, the economic contribution of international education to the Australian economy was AU$21.9 billion.

 

There are some interesting trends which have occurred over the last ten years when we take a closer look at the the evolution and distribution of this contribution across the various education sectors.

 

EXTRAORDINARY GROWTH  

 

Across all sectors, the international education industry in Australia experienced an impressive growth in the last ten years. Back in 2006, the economic contribution of this industry was estimated at AU$9.9 billion in comparison to the figure reported in 2016 of AU$21.9 billion which is more than double. On average, the industry has grown by 9% every year.

 

 

Chart 1. Total economic contribution of the international education industry in Australia

 

Source: With information from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS)

 

HIGHER EDUCATION  

Higher education was the main driver for this trend. The higher education sector in 2016 represented nearly 70% of the total economic contribution of the international education industry in Australia. In 2006, this sector generated an economic contribution of AU$6.5 billion compared with AU$15.1 billion in 2016, more than double in ten years. 

 

Chart 2. Economic contribution of the international education industry in Australia (Total and Higher Education)

Source: With information from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS)

 

OTHER SECTORS  

Considering the other sectors, data from the ABS indicates that the VET sector contributes 17% of the total followed by the ELICOS sector at 4.9% and the Schools sector at 4.0%. These sectors also experienced growth in the last ten years highlighting how well this industry overall has been performing over the last ten years and the valuable contribution it represents in the Australian economy.

 

 

Chart 3. Economic contribution of the international education industry in Australia (All sectors)

 

Source: With information from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS)

 

Also, let’s remember that behind these 21.9 billion dollars, there are thousands of extraordinary stories of international students visiting Australia and their success stories. As importantly, this success has been driven by the hard work and foresight of education institutions and government in Australia.

 


 

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