According to data from Immigration New Zealand, the government’s official immigration website, the number of overseas students seeking higher education at New Zealand’s institutions has plummeted by two-thirds.

According to, there are now 19,191 foreign students in New Zealand.

According to Radio New Zealand (RNZ), the current number of international students has reduced from 51,580 in April of last year as a result of the COVID-19 epidemic, which caused border restrictions.

Furthermore, figures show that the overall number of people with valid study visas does not include foreign students seeking a Ph.D. or other international students who pay the same costs as domestic students in the country.

In a typical academic year, there would be 115,000 foreign students in New Zealand during the course of the year, with the country welcoming around 86,000 international students at any given time.

According to data, private education institutions have been the most impacted in terms of inviting overseas students, with just 3,181 students now in the country, representing a 72 percent decline.

According to RNZ, there were 2,892 full-fee international students enrolled at Polytechnics in April 2020, a 69 percent decline from April 2020. On the other side, 8,914 students attended institutions in the nation, which was half the number of full-fee students before the epidemic.

Meanwhile, there was a reduction in the number of international students admitted to schools, which welcomed 4,197 students from other countries. At contrast, there were 10,500 international students in schools in April of previous year.

Figures also reveal that 1,828 students on valid study visas remain outside New Zealand, a decrease from a total of 9,272 in April last year, with over 500 students on visas for elementary and secondary schools and more than half on visas to study at universities.

China had 7,072 students with valid study visas in the country, India had 2,664 students, and South Korea had 1,460 students.

A total of 1,000 overseas students will be allowed to return to New Zealand in 2022. According to the Ministry of Education, the government has authorised an additional border class exception for 1,000 foreign tertiary students from the following groups:

  • 400 pilot trainees
  • 300 students at degree level and above
  • 300 students at the sub-degree level

Most universities in the country require students to be vaccinated against COVID-19, including New Zealand’s largest university, the University of Auckland, which has mandated that all students, staff, and visitors be fully vaccinated by January 4, 2022, in order to return to campus or participate in in-person activities.

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