Growth of foreign students coming to China has dropped significantly, according to a new report. China’s Ministry of Education revealed this month that there were some 500,000 foreign students in China last year, representing an increase of just 0.62 percent on 2017 numbers. This marks a significant slowdown from the double digit growth figures seen over the past decade.
Meanwhile, record numbers of Chinese students are now returning to the Mother Land to find work after studying abroad. Thanks to a cocktail of government incentives, a strong Chinese job market and increasingly tight visa restrictions in Western countries like the US, 80 percent of Chinese graduates are now forging their careers at home.
The majority of foreign students in China come from countries with strong trade and diplomatic links with Beijing, such as South Korea, which sent 50,600 students to the mainland last year, Thailand (28,608 students), Pakistan (28,023) and India (27,879). While only 63,000 foreigners studying in China received scholarships from the Chinese government in 2017, the majority who did came from these Asian countries.
Of the provinces with the largest number of overseas students, Beijing came top with 80,786, followed by Shanghai (61,400), Jiangsu (45,778), Zhejiang (38,190) and Liaoning (27,879).
Despite the drop in growth of foreign students coming to China, however, the country still remains in the world’s top five study abroad locations, with more than 190 counties sending their bright young things to learn in the Middle Kingdom.
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Keywords: foreign students coming to China
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