Almost a third of Australia’s Chinese students could be lost to other countries if the coronavirus travel ban remains in place.
It means that 100,000 international students are unable to attend Australia’s universities.
Nearly one third of those stuck in China and will look to other places to go to university, a survey conducted by the Education Consultants Association of Australia found.
Almost a third of Australia’s international students could be lost to other countries if the coronavirus travel ban remains in place from China. Pictured: people in Sydney wearing face masks in January following news about the coronavirus outbreak
Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Friday extended a travel ban by another week for people travelling to Australia from China
Of 16,000 students surveyed, 32 per cent said they would enroll in another country if they could not complete the first semester of 2020 in Australia, SBS reported.
Canada and UK have no travel bans in place.
Universities and the $37.9billion higher education industry could be thrown into chaos if the international students are unable to return in time for the semester.
China, Australia’s biggest trading partner, is the No.1 source of international students, who contribute $12billion a year to the economy.
They made up 38.3 per cent of foreign education enrollments in 2018, with Department of Education figures showing 152,591 were studying in Australia.
Some Australian universities have already delayed the start of the semester due to the coronavirus, but international students could look elsewhere.
When asked where they would redirect their studies, 58 per cent of students chose the UK, 31 per cent chose Canada and six per cent picked the US.
Foreign travellers who have recently left or passed through mainland China are currently banned from entering our shores. Pictured are visitors arriving in Brosbane before the ban was implemented.
The study, conducted between February 5 and February 9 on WeChat, surveyed 73 per cent of students who had already been studying in Australia.
With classes set to resume in March there are still 100,000 students stuck in China.
Group of Eight (Go8) chief executive Vicki Thomson said the findings are concerning as major competitors, the UK and Canada, did not have travel bans.
‘This could be a lost opportunity,’ she said.
Up to 100,000 international students will be unable to return to Australia in time for the start of semester if the travel ban is extended
Ms Thomson said the loss of students could result in a loss of $3billion in fees instantly if Chinese students don’t come to Australia.
Federal education Minister Dan Tehan acknowledged extended bans could cause a major disruption.
‘It’s very much wait and see what happens,’ Mr Tehan told Sky News on Sunday.
‘But my hope is that we will see some sort of a breakthrough and we will be able to get students here for the first semester, but we will have to wait and see.’
AUSTRALIANS WITH THE CORONAVIRUS
NEW SOUTH WALES: 4
- Three men aged 43, 53, and 35 who had recently travelled to China are confirmed to have contracted the disease.
- Two flew in from Wuhan while the other arrived in Sydney from Shenzhen, south China.
- They are being treated in isolation at Westmead Hospital and are in stable condition.
- A 21-year-old woman is identified as the fourth person to test positive for the illness in NSW.
- The woman, a student at UNSW, flew into Sydney International Airport on flight MU749 on January 23 and presented to the emergency department 24 hours later after developing flu-like symptoms.
- She is being treated in isolation at Westmead Hospital.
- A Chinese national aged in his 50s becomes the first confirmed case of the coronavirus in Australia.
- The man flew to Melbourne on China Southern flight CZ321 from Wuhan via Guangzhou on January 19.
- He is now in quarantined isolation at Monash Hospital in Clayton in Melbourne’s east.
- A Victorian man in his 60s is diagnosed with the coronavirus.
- He became unwell on January 23 – two days after returning from the Chinese city of Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak.
- The man was confirmed as positive on January 29 and was subsequently seen by doctors at the Monash Medical Centre. He was assessed as being well enough to stay at home.
- A woman in her 40s is found to have coronavirus.
- She was visiting from China and mostly spent time with her family.
- She is being treated at Royal Melbourne Hospital.
- A woman in her 20s in Melbourne is found to have the virus
- Queensland confirms its first case after a 44-year-old Chinese national wass diagnosed with the virus.
- He is being treated at Gold Coast University Hospital.
- A 42-year-old Chinese woman who was travelling in the same Wuhan tour group as the 44-year-old man tests positive. She is in Gold Coast University Hospital in stable condition.
- An eight-year-old boy has been diagnosed coronavirus. He is also from the tour group where the other Queensland cases came from
- The case was found in a 37-year-old man, who was a member of a group of nine Chinese tourists in quarantine on the Gold Coast
- A 37-year-old woman has been diagnosed with coronavirus from the same travel group that flew to Queensland from Melbourne on January 27
SOUTH AUSTRALIA: 2
- A Chinese couple in their 60s who arrived in Adelaide from Wuhan to visit relatives are confirmed to have coronavirus.
- Two Australians have been confirmed as having the virus in Wuhan itself. Australia has raised the travel alert level to ‘do not travel’ for the city of Wuhan – the epicentre of the outbreak – and for the entire Hubei province.
- Chief Medical Officer Brendan Murphy says unless people have contact with someone who is unwell and has come from that part of China, there is no need for current concern.
- Four Australians are among 65 newly-confirmed coronavirus cases aboard the quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship docked at Yokohama.
Source: dailymail UK