For the first time ever, South Australia’s international education sector has overtaken wine to become the state’s number one export.
Recent figures released by the ABS show South Australia’s international education sector was valued at $1.92 billion in 2018/19, just ahead of wine at $1.91 billion.
Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment David Ridgway said international education is a key economic driver of the South Australian economy and it will create more jobs for the future.
“The strong growth of this sector is in line with the Marshall Government’s Growth State Plan, which has been designed in collaboration with key industry sectors to drive economic activity and create more local jobs.
“As a state, our international education sector continues to grow well above the national average and that is a huge credit to all in the industry who make our state globally attractive to international students.
“Just last month, the number of international students enrolled in South Australian institutions exceeded a record 40,000.
“For every four international student enrolments, one local job is created and that is why this sector is so important for the economic growth and prosperity of our state.
“This latest data also shows the value of international education grew by 16.6 per cent compared to the previous financial year.
“International education plays a critical role in South Australia’s economy, it attracts new students, new industries and new investors to our state.
“Since coming to office, the Marshall Government has increased investment into the sector by increasing funding to StudyAdelaide, setting up the Ministerial Advisory Council for International Education and working hand-in-hand with industry to develop the ‘Live, Learn, Stay’ International Education 2030 sector plan.
“Our continued growth highlights we are well on the way to reaching the sector plan’s goal of 70,000 enrolments by 2030, doubling the value of the sector to $3 billion and employing up to 23,500 South Australians.
“As part of the sector plan we’ve included targeted initiatives where international graduates will be encouraged to join a new generation of entrepreneurs and start-up founders to be part of the industries of the future.
“We have a number of government migration initiatives that are making it easier for international students to extend their stay in South Australia following their graduation.
“These include the new Supporting Innovation in South Australia visa, improved access to state nomination for the state’s high performing graduates and an extension of post-study work rights for the state’s international undergraduates from two years to three years,” said Minister Ridgway.