( Universitiesuk) – Responding to the Home Office exit check report and ONS student migration reports, Alistair Jarvis, Chief Executive of Universities UK, commented:
“These two official reports show that there is very high visa compliance by international students. The number of students overstaying their visas is a tiny fraction of previous (incorrect) claims.
“International students make a vital contribution to the UK economy, enrich our campuses and the experience of UK students culturally as well as economically.
It is crucial that future student visa policy is developed using robust data. This should be coupled with a positive international communications campaign led by government to highlight that international students are welcomed and valued visitors to the UK.
“The ONS’ commitment to improve the immigration data to inform the future understanding of student migration patterns is very welcome.
Universities UK are ready to assist the ONS and the Home Office in this work. Any future decisions on international student visa policy must not be based on the International Passenger Survey data.”
Notes to editors
- The ONS has also published a commentary on the latest research findings: What’s happening with international student migration?
- A recent ComRes poll revealed that the majority of British public would like to see the same number or more international students.
- Universities UK’s recent release on the economic impact of international students can be found on the Universities UK website.
- Universities UK is the representative organisation for the UK’s universities. Founded in 1918, its mission is to be the definitive voice for all universities in the UK, providing high quality leadership and support to its members to promote a successful and diverse higher education sector.
- With 136 members and offices in London, Cardiff (Universities Wales) and Edinburgh (Universities Scotland), it promotes the strength and success of UK universities nationally and internationally. Visit: www.universitiesuk.ac.uk