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Will Indonesia become a major student market?

posted Apr 17, 2013, 7:22 PM by Unknown user
Indonesia is best known as an exporter of coffee, palm oil and rubber, but with rapid economic growth is looking towards a more diverse economic future. With GDP climbing by 6% annually, this nation of 240 million, the fourth most populated on the planet, wants to build capacity and up-skill. Naturally its demand for good education, gained at home or abroad, is growing fast.

The British Council estimates that some 2.6 million Indonesians will enter higher education in the next decade, buoyed by the country’s economic growth, political stability, demographic changes and rising education levels.

But despite the emerging prosperity, the HE sector is not going to be able to cater for all of Indonesia’s aspiring population and the number of students studying overseas is likely to grow. It’s true this is starting from a low base: it has been reported that just 36,000 students – 1% of Indonesia’s student population – currently study abroad.

However, the British council last year estimated annual growth of 20% lay ahead. Steve Buckle, head of the British Council in Indonesia, has gone as far as saying the country will be one of the world’s “major international education markets in the next few years.”