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Canada: BC courts Chinese, Indian markets

Educators from British Columbia, Canada, welcomed major familiarisation trips from China and India this autumn, as the province continued pursuing its “aggressive target” to double foreign enrolments in three years.

BC Premier Christy Clark wants to double the number of international students in the province by 2015

21,814 Chinese and 12,049 Indians studied in Canada in 2011

In October, five principals from the Delhi Public School Society – a non-profit representing over 130 schools in India – visited BC public post-secondary institutions including the University of Victoria, Vancouver Island University and Simon Fraser University (SFU).

The visits follow the province’s largest ever trade mission to India and China in 2011

In November a delegation from the Beijing Municipal Education Commission visited middle and high schools in the Surrey School District. Another from Guangdong province visited SFU in December.

BC Premier Christy Clark has made international education a key plank of her plan to boost jobs and growth in British Columbia, and wants to double the number of international students in the province to 188,000 by 2015.

British Columbia is the number one destination for international students in Canada.

In 2011, 21,814 long term students from China studied in Canada, up from 16,367 in 2009, along with 12,049 from India – up from 5,709. In recognition of the importance of both markets, Clark led the province’s largest ever trade mission to India and China in 2011.

Christina Wu, communications manager at the British Columbia Council for International Education said the fam trips “represented another step forward in building key relationships between educators locally and in Asia”.

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