Record numbers of international students boosting jobs in South Australia

For the first time, the number of international students enrolled in South Australian institutions has exceeded 40,000 and is expected to create more than 1300 additional local jobs.

Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment David Ridgway said that the number of international student enrolments in South Australian institutions has grown 15.4 per cent compared to the 10.6 per cent national growth rate.

“In the first nine months of 2019, South Australia attracted a record number of international students already reaching 40,979 enrolments in the year to September.

“This is 5,400 more enrolments across all markets compared to the corresponding period last year and this growth is expected to create an additional 1,350 jobs for South Australians.

“International education plays a critical role in South Australia’s economy, it’s our largest services export and second largest general export following wine, but further to that, it attracts new students, new industries and new investors to our state.

“Today’s figures justify the Marshall Government increased investment into the sector by increasing funding to StudyAdelaide, setting up the Ministerial Advisory Council for International Education and working hand-in-hand with industry to develop the ‘Live, Learn, Stay’ International Education 2030 sector plan.

“Our continued growth highlights we are well on our way to reaching the plan’s goal of 70,000 enrolments by 2030 and doubling the sector to a $3 billion industry employing up to 23,500 South Australians.

“One key focus of the State Government’s Growth State Plan is to retain our international students in South Australia post study.

International student Marina T. Dias who travelled to South Australia from Brazil to undertake her Master of Accounting at Kaplan Business School, is a prime example of this.

“This year, I landed a placement with Logic Plus, where I’ve been working 20 hours a week whilst finalising my studies,” Ms Dias said.

“This experience has opened up doors for me to stay on in Adelaide post Master’s degree, with an offer to continue on at Logic Plus full time in 2020.

“I’m excited to take the next step into my working life here in South Australia, and look forward to seeing where this opportunity takes me.”

The latest enrolments data shows there is 15.5 per cent growth in the higher education sector and 36.3 per cent growth in the VET sector respectively.

South Australia’s school sector is also on the rise, growing by 0.7 per cent, while at the national level, the school sector’s enrolments declined by 3.7 per cent, giving the state’s school sector a bigger share (11.1 per cent) of total international school student enrolments in Australia.

While China remains a large source for international students, the next nine source countries combined – India, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Nepal, Malaysia, South Korea, Kenya, Philippines and Brazil – make up 45.7 per cent of South Australia’s international student enrolments.

Markets showing solid growth include India (up 3089 enrolments), Nepal (up 479 enrolments), the Philippines (up 423 enrolments), Brazil (up 326 enrolments) and Vietnam (up 300 enrolments).

For further information about international education in South Australia, visit

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