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Lincoln University’s Director of greater China, Jeff Sun, is proposing that New Zealand universities have the scope to take in at least 10,000 students a year.
From July 2015 to July 2016 5804 Chinese students came to New Zealand to study, a number just over half of the projected target.
Sun believes Chinese students typically come to New Zealand in higher numbers when the New Zealand dollar is relatively weak.
The largest wave of Chinese students came between 2001 and 2002, while the dollar was relatively weak, when 20,000 students came to study in New Zealand.
Lincoln University’s agricultural studies program has been a particularly popular destination for Chinese students, followed by IT and commerce programs across the country.
Promoting New Zealand universities to Chinese students has been an aim of Tertiary Education Minister Steven Joyce since he was appointed to the position.
Joyce has encouraged Chinese students to work and study here, with the hope that the New Zealand economy will grow by around $5 billion by 2025.