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Overseas Student Arrivals in Australia in March 2020 drops due to COVID-19

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Overseas Student Arrivals in Australia in March 2020

As per the current data of the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), there is a drop of 16% (decrease of 11,790 students) in the number of overseas student arrivals in Australia in March 2020 compared to last year due to COVID-19 travel restrictions

The outbreak of COVID-19 which started in China in December 2019, has continued to disrupt the movement of international students this month, due to the introduction of travel restrictions from February 2020. In 2019, China was the largest source country nationally. Educational exports are an important contributor to the Australian economy.

The only numeric increase was for the Schools sector, with 170 more students (25%).

The highest numeric decreases were for:

  • the Higher Education sector, with 5,230 fewer students (-10%)
  • the Vocational Education and Training sector, with 3,170 fewer students (-35%)
  • the Independent ELICOS sector, with 2,300 fewer students (-49%)

Decrease in arrival of student visa in March 2020

(a) Includes short-term (less than 1 year) and long-term (1 year or more) visitor arrivals.
(b) English Language Intensive Courses for Overseas Students.

Due to border restrictions for International students in previous months to control the global pandemic, hundreds of enrolled international students at Australian institutions haven’t been able to travel to Australia.

Australian student visa holders outside Australia due to Coronavirus

On 08th May 2020, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the government will consider lifting the border restrictions for international students as part of stage three of the framework to ease coronavirus restrictions.


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