Nepal’s government raised the rate of tax students must pay when transferring tuition fees to overseas institutions from 2% to 3% as part of a new budget in May.
The move is the latest in a series of government interventions targeting Nepali students, sparking concerns that the country could see less students going abroad.
But agents told The PIE News that the impact of the decision will be minor.
“The tax was always there,” said Ananta Poudyal, managing director of Nepal Education Consultancy and president of the Association of Nepalese Alumni from Australia. “I don’t think it will have any dramatic impact to affect the numbers.”
“The tax was always there”
“I am confident it will not prevent Nepali students going abroad,” agreed Jayaram Poudel, Nepal country manager at VIEC.
Over 20,000 Nepalis secured Australian student visas in the first half of the 2022/23 academic year, making it Australia’s third largest source market following China and India.
But Nepal’s government has been accused of trying to prevent students from leaving the country for overseas education.
Earlier this year, the government reversed a decision to stop offering “No Objection Certificates”, which are required by students going overseas for non higher-education programs, such as vocational training.
The ministry of education had decided to only allow students to go abroad for university programs, but backtracked after pressure from students, agents and providers.
“Though the government is concerned that many students are going out, [they] also know that it is the fundamental right of the student to study what they want,” Poudel said.