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Illegal overseas students disappear.



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MEDIA RELEASE

 

SENATOR KIM CARR

Manager of Opposition Business in the Senate

Labor’s Parliamentary Secretary for Education

 

12/10/1999

 

ILLEGAL OVERSEAS STUDENTS DISAPPEAR

 

Labor Opposition revelations about a visa racket operating within the overseas st udent industry were vindicated last night when the Federal Government confirmed that they had been unable to locate more than 400 overseas students associated with the collapse, three months ago, of National College of Australia,” Labor’s Parliamentary Secretary for Education, Senator Kim Carr said today.

 

In answer to repeated Opposition questions in the Senate as to the location of the missing students, the Government confirmed:

 

•  733 students were associated with the college, 133 more than originally thought

•  Only 639 of these students entered Australia on student visas

•  At least 273 of the students may never have attended the college

• 18 were not issued with visas to come to Australia

• DETYA has only been able to find address for 332 students

• Only 168 students have supplied evidence as having been enrolled at NCA

• Electronic and other records have disappeared or are incomplete

 

“This appalling account of missing students and illegitimate practices highlights the total chaos that has engulfed the a dministration of overseas students entering Australia.

 

“Both DIMA and DETYA appear totally unable to track the vast majority of the 733 students associated with the failed National College of Australia.

 

The Government for the first time has acknowledged that other colleges are currently under investigation for visa compliance. In the Ministers own words: ‘The NCA case highlighted some of the less effective aspects of the ESOS Act.’

 

“These students are not arriving in rusty boats, but in Jumbo jets; clutching a student visa and walking straight into illegal work in Australia.

 

“These revelations about the National College of Australia are counter-productive for the vast majority of legitimate private providers, and are doing untold damage to Australia’s $3.5 billion education export industry,” Senator Carr said

 

The Government must now actively seek to work with our education export industry to stop the growing level of scams perpetrated by unethical providers,” Senator Carr said.

 

For further comment contact: Senator Kim Carr 02 62773730 or 0419 563 922

 

 

dd  1999-10-14  11:08