INDEPENDENT NEWS

International Student Levy Increase

Published: Wed 3 Dec 2003 05:13 PM
Media Statement
International Student Levy Increase
Spokesperson for the New Zealand Association of Private Education Providers (NZAPEP), Mike Roberts, says that association members are very disappointed that the Minister has seen fit to penalise law abiding providers who are compliant with the conditions of their registration for the costs incurred by the Government in meeting some of the losses incurred by students in the wake of the failures of Modern Age and Carich.
He notes that a number of Association members who are also members of CRELS (Combined Registered English Language Schools) actually took on students who had lost their prepaid fees at no charge, to help soften the blow for these students. To now be hit with an increase in the levy is to suffer double jeopardy.
He further notes that most public sector institutions also run full fee courses for international students. When they get into a loss situation, this effectively results in cross-subsidies from their Government funded domestic student operations. If public sector providers can participate in the profits from this sector, why are they not required to share in the losses. To single out the private sector in this way is to support public sector inefficiency at the taxpayers’ expense.
Dr Roberts points out that export education is the fourth largest foreign exchange earner in New Zealand and suggests that the Minister would do well to look at the very supportive role that the Australian Government plays in their support of the international education industry, instead of “killing the goose that lays the golden egg.
ENDS

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