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Thai Agents Visit New Zealand

Thai Agents Visit New Zealand

Four education agents from Thailand are visiting New Zealand for twelve days in July/August as guests of Education New Zealand. During their time here they will be visiting educational institutions from Whangarei to Invercargill.

This visit will allow the participating institutions to form a close working relationship with the agents, and allow the agents to see first hand the quality of education and pastoral care that their clients can expect if they choose to come to New Zealand for their education.

Thailand is an important market for New Zealand educators. The industry realises that diversification and the development of new markets is vital to the future of international education, and years of solid work have led to Thailand becoming our 4th largest market by student numbers, with over 3400 coming to NZ to study in 2002.

2003 has proven a challenging year for international education. Changing market conditions, SARS, the strengthening dollar and fierce competition from other countries have all had an impact on the industry. In response, New Zealand continues to improve its services and compete strongly for students. This visit is part of a comprehensive series by agents from many of New Zealand’s key education markets during 2003. These visits are all part of the joint Education New Zealand/New Zealand Trade & Enterprise ‘Five Steps Forward’ strategy that promotes New Zealand globally as an education destination.

What? Thai education agents visit to New Zealand When? July 27th – August 8th Who? Four agents will be coming to NZ. They will be escorted by Education New Zealand staff whilst here. Where? The agents will be visiting institutions in the following regions:

Northland Auckland Waikato Tauranga Hawkes Bay Wellington Christchurch Invercargill

Education New Zealand are happy to facilitate interviews with the visiting agents and with participating institutions at your request.


Education New Zealand Market Brief

Thailand

Thailand has been a strong and consistent market for New Zealand. In 2002, 3414 Thai students chose NZ educators 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. However, interim figures in for 2003 suggest that the Thai market is flattening out. It is too early to tell if this is a temporary phenomenon or indicative of longer term market changes.

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. The recently completed June Fair series was very successful, with over 40 institutions attending the main Bangkok event. Reports back suggest that although attendance numbers were down slightly, those prospective students who did attend were much more committed towards pursuing an education in New Zealand over other countries.

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.

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.

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