Even with tougher policies for international students, the United Kingdom (UK) sets the target of £30bn by 2020 through education export. UK’s new minister for universities and science, Jo Johnson, told the audience at British Council’s Going Global conference that his country genuinely welcomes genuine international students. The minister supports the Home Office efforts against the fraudulent foreign students and shut down 870 educational institutions which were deemed bogus. The minister did not present any plan how the UK government will achieve the target of £30bn by 2020.
Jo Johnson is confident that strict policies regarding the foreign students in the UK will not deter international students to enroll in the UK educational institutions and education export is expected to generate £30bn by 2020. When asked about the possibility of allowing post study work permits to international students, the minister said, “We have a system which has been in place for a number of years and is now bedding down in terms of how post-study work works, and the whole structure of our offer. It is a strong offer.”
Jo Johnson said, “We are still looking at ways of helping institutions deal with overstaying.” “We now have a great advantage of a strong system of exit checks that will enable us to keep tabs on overstaying and determine where and when it’s a problem,” added the minister.
The Minister while defending UK Home Office decision to close down 870 colleges said, “It is in the interests of everyone in the higher education sector to drive up quality and drive up standards.” Jo Johnson said, “We have the component of education exports derived from income from students coming to study here.”
Higher Education Funding Council for England has reported that the number of students arriving from India to the UK fell from 18,535 in 2010-11 to 10,235 in 2012-13. Declining number of international students enrolling in British educational institutions without easing some of restrictions in place for foreign students will most likely not allow UK government to achieve the target of £30bn in eduction export by 2020.