Australian study visa grants drop sharply in 2024

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Posted on June 27, 2024


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The Department of Home Affairs in Australia released a report stating that during the first four months of this year, the country’s study visa approvals had decreased by about thirty percent. A total of 74,421 study visas were awarded to applicants from overseas between January and April of this year. This represents a significant decrease from the 1,04,808 visas awarded during the same time in 2023.

An ICEF Monitor study states that in order to put the total reduction for the first four months of this year into perspective, it’s important to realize that this decline contrasts with a larger drop of 53% in visas granted to offshore students between 2019–20 and 2020–21, which coincided with the start of the pandemic.

Programs affected:

The fields of English Language Intensive Courses for Overseas Students (ELICOS) and Vocational Education and Training (VET) have had severe difficulties this year, with drops in visa permits of 56% and 69%, respectively.

These numbers indicate the lowest levels of visa grants for both industries in a decade or more, excluding the pandemic period.

According to the ICEF data, these sectors collectively accounted for nearly two-thirds (61%) of the overall decline in visa approvals from January to April of this year.

Effect of New Migration Policies:

These figures provide unambiguous proof of the immediate effects of the Australian government’s updated immigration laws, which were implemented in December 2023. This signaled the start of a string of actions intended to reduce student migration, such as stricter minimum funding requirements, a cap on international enrollments (set to take effect in January 2025), and, most recently, new steps to prevent onshore students from changing their visa status.

Demands for greater transparency in the visa approval process have arisen as a result of an increasing number of cases since January in which visa applications are denied. According to the source, prospective students must essentially show that they have saved more money, have improved their English, and have passed a “Genuine Student Test” in order to be eligible for the revised immigration requirements.

ApplyBoard reports that the UK issued 116,455 fewer visas to Indian students this year than it did the year before, a 15.7% decrease from the prior year. Over the previous six years, there has only been one case of H1 visas for Indian students being issued seldom.

Nonetheless, by the end of March 2024, Indian students had received the most number of student visas issued in the UK.

According to the research, Indian students brought dependents with them at the exact same rate as the UK average in 2023: 0.31 dependants per main applicant. However, the dependents policy probably contributed to this reduction.

The research also suggests that other factors may be influencing the decline in the number of new Indian students, such as apprehension over the Graduate Route or a general reluctance to commit during a year full of changes.