The number of Indian students going for studies to Australia would see a sharp drop this year for various reasons, Australian High Commissioner Peter N Varghese said on Saturday.
"We will see significant reduction in number of students going to Australia from India this year. The drop will be 60-70 percent compared to 2009. But I am confident we will rebuild the relationship in the coming years," Varghese told a media meet.
The high commissioner was in the city to inaugurate the office of the Australian Trade Commission.
The reasons he cited behind the sharp decline were the changes in skilled migration programme of Australia, strengthening of the Australian dollar that made cost of education higher and lastly, the recent killings of Indian students in Australia that "had some deterrent effect".
Nitin Garg, an accounting graduate from India studying in Australia was killed in January, while a three-year old boy Gurshan Singh was killed in March.
Varghese said to re-build the education business, Australia would emphasise more on institution-to-institution link in the future.
Among various courses, cookery and hair dressing are very popular programmes for Indian students going there.