The Group of Eight (Go8), Australia’s leading research-intensive universities, welcomes the Morrison Government’s announcement of new visa measures that will support Australia’s international students through the difficult times caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting recession.
As noted by the Hon Alan Tudge MP – Acting Minister for Immigration, and the Hon Dan Tehan MP – Federal Minister for Education, in their joint announcement today; Australia’s international higher education students (a third of whom study at Go8 universities) make an extremely valuable contribution to Australia, adding significantly to our economy as Australia’s fourth largest export sector. They also add to our vibrant multicultural community.
Go8 Interim Chair Professor Margaret Gardner AC who is President and Vice-Chancellor of Monash University says that “the Go8 is pleased Government has recognised the need for flexibility around visa settings in the current circumstances. This will ensure students who have been forced to study offshore due to travel restrictions will still have access to post-study work rights.
“The Go8 strongly supports this move. Post COVID-19 it is highly likely Australia will face fierce competition for the best students as the world seeks to rebuild. Australia will need to stay connected to the world and with a population of only 25 million people will also need to access the world’s best skills and expertise to complement our home-grown talent.
“Today’s changes will help Australia to position ourselves for this new reality. The Go8 looks forward to continuing to work with Governments at all levels to secure a prosperous future for our nation. We are pleased that international students are recognised as being part of that future.”