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Education New Zealand Market Brief - Thailand

Education New Zealand Market Brief


Thailand has been a strong and consistent market for New Zealand, and 3414 Thai students chose NZ educators in 2002, making Thailand our 4th largest market by student numbers. These figures represent a significant increase on the year before, and indeed Thai student numbers have been increasing steadily over the last 5 years. Early figures in for 2003 suggest that the Thai market is continuing to develop. This rate of growth is pleasing and student numbers from Thailand look very sustainable in the medium term.

The Thai market is quite broad based. The English Language sector has the biggest number of Thai students, but significant numbers are also choosing secondary school. Thai students are also well represented in the tertiary sector, but the biggest numbers will continue to found at language and secondary schools throughout the country.

Recent initiatives such as compulsory registration for all providers and compliance with the Code of Practice for Pastoral Care will further cement New Zealand’s standing as an excellent destination for Thai students. As in many Asian markets, education agents are a strong and important link between students and institutions.

New Zealand faces strong competition in the Thai market. The USA and Australia in particular are seen as good destinations by Thai students, and Australia has posted good growth rates. The USA has long been the destination of choice for many Thai students, but there are signs that their market growth is tapering off as students seek alternative destinations. Another more recent competitive trend is the development of international education in countries such as Singapore and Malaysia, who benefit from proximity. The rise in the value of the New Zealand dollar also has an impact in the marketplace.

SARS has had very little effect in this market. Thailand has not been the subject of SARS travel advisories.

New Zealand values this market and takes it very seriously. The joint Education New Zealand and Trade New Zealand ‘Five Steps Forward’ marketing strategy has a range of activities in place to help our institutions in the Thai market this year, including the June Fair series and a planned visit to NZ by Thai agents at the end of July.

The Thai education market is currently worth nearly $60million to the New Zealand economy, and forms an important part of the diversification strategy that New Zealand education providers are pursuing.

For more information about this visit, contact:
Stuart Boag, Education New Zealand


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