Northern Territory

International students boost population and create jobs

students university study stock image

The Territory Government will accelerate efforts to attract international students as a key part of the Territory’s economic recovery, diversifying the economy and creating local jobs.

Raising student numbers from 2500 to more than 10 000 over the next seven years is expected to result in a significant financial return to the Territory of $295 million per year, up from $91 million per year in 17/18.

Current Australian Government figures show the number of international students enrolled in Territory education institutions grew by four per cent between October 2017 and October 2018 to reach 2559, making it the NT’s third largest service industry export.

The figures show the average international student contributes around $37 400 per year to the Territory economy, supporting around 800 jobs.

An International Student Expenditure survey conducted by Deloitte in late 2017 involving 365 students shows that more students will provide a boost to Territory retailers and to landlords with about 35 per cent of their spending on food, phone and internet, textbooks and dining out and 39 per cent on rent.

Following average growth of 17 per cent in international students over the 10 years to 2017 the Territory Government’s plan is for an annual 20 per cent increase in the number of students studying in the Territory to reach its goal.

Government’s targeted strategy to boost numbers involves:

  • A focus on China, Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam, India and Nepal. These nations represent migrant communities already well established in the Territory and have been identified by Charles Darwin University’s population research as being the immigrants that stay the longest in the Territory.
  • Working with local community and business to attract study tours and develop market ready study tour itineraries and products across the Territory.
  • Hosting the International Consultants Education Fair – Australia and New Zealand Agents (ICEF-ANZA) in April 2019 in Darwin. Research shows 75 per cent of international students are recruited through agents. We anticipate 447 participants representing 308 organisations from 49 countries.
  • Through the StudyNT unit coordinate both public sector and private sector efforts to attract students in a Team NT approach.

The recently signed Cities Deal will create a Charles Darwin University campus in the CBD with CDU estimating more than 11, 000 students will be enrolled at the CBD City Campus by 2028, including an additional 1000 international students.

The International Student Strategy is based on significant consultation with international education providers, the Territory Government International Student Expenditure Survey conducted by Deloitte in late 2017 and ongoing engagement with source nations such as Vietnam, the Philippines and China.

In February 2019, a delegation will travel to India and Nepal to promote the Territory which will include private international education providers.

Source: NT Government