Canada may cap number of foreign student visas: What it means for Indians
Canada Student Visas: The number of foreign students in Canada has nearly tripled in the past decade, reaching more than 800,000 last year.
Canada threatened to cap the number of foreign student visas if the quality of education and housing doesn’t improve for newcomers. The country's immigration minister Marc Miller said, “We are prepared to take necessary measures, including significantly limiting visas, to ensure that designated learning institutions provide adequate and sufficient student support."
The number of foreign students in Canada has nearly tripled in the past decade, reaching more than 800,000 last year. International students pay about five times as much tuition fees as Canadian amid soaring housing costs. As per Statistics Canada, international students pay C$36,123 on average for undergraduate programs, compared with C$6,834 for Canadian undergrads.
Marc Miller said that institutions and provinces and territories that regulate them, have until September to ensure that international students are “set up for success."
Canada has a responsibility to support new students and protect them from “unscrupulous individuals” who offer inadequate living conditions with inflated prices, the minister said, adding, “There are in provinces the diploma equivalent of puppy mills that are just churning out diplomas and this is not a legitimate student experience."
“There is fraud and abuse and it needs to end," he asserted.
Canada has no far imposed a cap on foreign student visas but has instead announced a crackdown on private colleges. The government is prioritizing issuing permits for students attending institutions that provide top-quality services and support, including housing, the minister had said in October.
The immigration minister also announced an increase to the financial requirement for new study permit applicants. Now, single applicants will have to show they have C$20,635, in addition to their first year of tuition and travel costs, starting January 1. A policy that allows foreign students to work more than 20 hours a week while class is in session will be extended until April 30, the minister said.