Chinese students are driving a surge in non-European international students starting courses in the UK, according to new data.
The Higher Education Statistics Agency reported a 10 percent rise in the number of international students paying full fees, bringing the number up to 343,000. There was a 2% rise in the overall number of students studying in higher education and a 2% increase in non-UK European students. The number of Chinese students studying in the UK increased by 13% to more than 120,000. The number of Indian students also went up to almost 27,000.
Universities Minister Chris Skidmore said the government was committed to expanding the number of foreign students to 600,000 by 2030 to deliver its International Education strategy.
The Minister tweeted: “Really welcome news today to see a continued rise in the number of international students choosing our world-renowned universities to study. Our Higher education sector continues to thrive globally thanks to its quality and reputation.”
The University of Manchester last week revealed that, as part of a new Strategic Plan, its leadership has committed to providing more international opportunities than ever before.
International students provide a valuable source of revenue for the University and it is hoping to maintain a steady number of students from outside of the UK.
This comes as Manchester students raised concerns over the embattled Erasmus programme last week.
The University said it was fighting to highlight the importance of the Erasmus programme and lobbying the government regarding its continuation post-Brexit.