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Wednesday, 13 November 1985
Page: 2115

(Question No. 551)


Senator Colston asked the Minister for Education, upon notice, on 16 September 1985:

Is it correct, as stated in Business News, Vol. 6 No. 16, issued by the Australian Information Service that ``the Tokyu Corporation of Japan and the Western Australian Government will conduct a feasibility study into the establishment of Australia's first international university in Perth''; if so, what role does the Australian Government have in relation to this proposal and has the Australian Government been consulted about this possible project and with what outcomes.


Senator Ryan —The answer to the honourable senator's question is as follows:

A feasibility study is being undertaken into the development of privately funded university facilities in Western Australia. The study involves Murdoch University, Yanchep Sun City Pty Ltd (the Western Australian subsidiary of Tokyu Corporation of Japan) and EXIM, the Western Australian Government's trading corporation.

The honourable Senator also asked about the Commonwealth Government's role. The Minister for Trade and I issued a joint media release on 23 September this year in which we announced several decisions made by the Government concerning the export of education services and related matters, including the establishment of private tertiary institutions. The Government has decided that it will not support the establishment of completely private institutions. However, further consideration is being given to the question of Commonwealth-funded institutions providing full-fee courses to overseas students in association with private organisations and the necessary safeguards which should apply if such arrangements were introduced. The Commonwealth Government has not been formally consulted by the State Government on the details of the proposed arrangements. I would expect that such consultations would take place after the feasibility study has been completed.