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Wednesday, 24 August 1994
Page: 295

(Question No. 1497)


Senator Bell asked the Minister representing the Minister for Employment, Education and Training, upon notice, on 28 June 1994:

  (1) Following the introduction of Australian Education Centres, has the percentage of students studying in private education institutions fallen for each of the nine countries listed.

  (2) Is the total number of students from these nine countries enrolled in private institutions at 30 June 1993 less than the number enrolled at 30 June 1990.

  (3) Do these figures indicate that the introduction of Australian Education Centres has had a direct negative impact on the recruitment of overseas students to private institutions; if not, what other explanation is possible for the trend in the figures.


Senator Schacht —The Minister for Employment, Education and Training has provided the following answer to the honourable senator's question:

  (1) The overall percentage of students from each of the nine countries listed who are studying in private education institutions has fallen. However, there were falls in numbers of students from only four of these countries. In the case of the five other countries, increased enrolments were recorded.

  (2) The total number of students from the nine countries in which AECs have been established who are enrolled in private institutions at 30 June 1993 is 0.9 per cent less than the number enrolled at 30 June 1990.

  (3) The total number of overseas students enrolled in Australian institutions increased significantly from 1990 to 1993, up from 47,065 in 1990 to 63,013 in 1993.

  The numbers of students enrolled in private institutions fell only marginally, as seen in answer to question 2 above. This fall in relative share has to be seen in total context. The number of overseas students studying in Australia increased by 34 per cent between 1990 and 1993. During that period, private institutions managed to maintain student numbers at about the same levels as in past years. Consequently, the public institutions have obtained a higher relative share of the overseas student market.

  Details of the impact of the Australian Education Centres on the private education sector were given in response to Question No. 1382 of 10 May 1994:

  "The impact of the introduction of the Australian Education Centres on the private education sector is difficult to assess because of the impact of college closures. For five countries with AECs, the number of students studying at private institutions in Australia increased between 1990 and 1993. Numbers fell for the other four countries."