Jump in offshore lodgements by Indians

Melbourne: There has been a jump in ‘offshore lodgements’ by Indians. As per a report, Australia recorded a rise of over 150 per cent during July-September quarter 2011 as compared to same period last year.

“This quarter, offshore lodgements from Indian nationals increased significantly. The Department received 2,900 applications, which represented a 153.9 per cent increase compared the same period in 2010,” a report of immigration department said.

“This growth was mostly driven by an increase in Higher Education sector applications,” it noted.

However, 80 per cent of the total Indian applications were lodged by people already in Australia, mainly students looking to begin new courses.

“We’re hearing anecdotally that [Indian] students are interested in applying again for postgraduate coursework studies and those sorts of things,” according to Swinburne University pro vice-chancellor Jeffrey Smart who was quoted by ‘The Australian’ newspaper recently.

Smart said Swinburne’s third intake this year had seen an increase in Indian undergraduate and postgraduate coursework students.

But he said the third intake was generally too small to draw conclusions about enrolment trends.

He also said institutions should avoid an over-reliance on the subcontinent.

It is also said that while grant rates to offshore Indian applicants are at 45 per cent, lower to an average of 85 per cent, India was still second strongest international education market for onshore Australian education.

The official figures of Year-to-date enrolments from India have recorded a plunge of over 40 per cent compared to the peak year of 2009.