Australia Grants 306,400 Student Visas in 2022, Up 34% From 2019; Will the Trend Continue in 2023?

Key Takeaways:

  • More than 300,000 Student visas have been granted to international students from different countries in 2022.
  • Data from the Department of Home Affairs show that almost 44,000 Student visa applications were received from India during the last six months of 2022.
  • Australian universities have a strong tie with India with an objective of educating 500 million students by 2035.
  • Aside from India, Nepal, Colombia, and the Philippines are three other countries seen with a rising number of international students.

Universities in Australia are bracing for a significant rebound in the international education sector as applications for Student Visas skyrocket to pre-pandemic levels amid phenomenal demand from India and the subcontinent.

Based on preliminary data from the Department of Home Affairs, almost 44,000 Student Visa applications were received from India during the last six months of 2022 which is higher than China’s 38,701 in the same period. From June 1 to December 20, 2022, the Department granted a remarkable 306,400 Student Visas to international students from different parts of the world.

Visa Applications Received in the Last 6 Months of 2022

MSM Insights Table-Australia.Student Visa

Source: SBS Punjabi

Universities Australia chief executive Catarina Jackson said Australian universities had almost 100,000 Indian students alone last year. She added they have a strong tie with India and that their help is wanted and needed to educate 500 million students by 2035 both in Australia and in India.

Will the number of international students from India continue to increase this year in Australia? Let’s find out.

Post-Study Work Rights Provided to Indian Students

Jackson also said that the pact between Australia and India, which has committed to providing Indian students with post-study work rights, will contribute to the unlocking of the full potential of the education relationship between the two nations. Perhaps this is one reason the number of student visa applications from India to Australia is increasing.

To address the shortages in the workforce during the pandemic, the Department of Home Affairs said student visa work hours restrictions were relaxed temporarily and this lasts until June 30, 2023. Indeed, until the end of June this year, all current and new arrivals and secondary applicants can work for more than 40 hours a fortnight in any of the sectors of the economy. They can work as well, prior to the commencement of their course of study.

Beyond June 30, the number of hours a Student Visa holder will be allowed will again be capped at an increased 48-hours-per-fortnight rate. This then guarantees a student’s focus on obtaining a quality education and qualification in Australia.

Aside from India, the scale of interest seen in international students also surges in Nepal with over 18,000 Student Visa applications, followed by Colombia with more than 13,300, and the Philippines, with over 11,800, emerging as the fourth and fifth largest sources of Student Visa applications in the last six months of 2022.

MSM Insights_Infographics

Improved Student Visa Processing Time

It seems that Australia’s initiative in attracting more international students to its colleges and universities is gaining a positive result. As part of the actions taken to improve processing times, the Australian government has focused resources on visa processing which also includes new staff recruitment.

Whenever possible, the Department aims to streamline the application processes without compromising the integrity of the program. Such actions have already lowered the number of applications on hand. 

Moreover, there has already been a refinement in terms of visa processing times across the majority of the visa programs, specifically across temporary visa programs. Despite the improved student processing times, they are presently affected by the previous or older applications on hand, although the Australian government has committed to improving this once it has worked through them.

More International Students This 2023

The increasing number of visa applications from India can be ascribed to a series of so-called “sweeteners” that the government offers to attract more international students. This is what many experts believe.

Such “sweeteners” include the availability of unlimited work hours for student visa holders until end-June this year and paid work opportunities for foreign students. I think the trend in student visa applications since 2019 will definitely continue in terms of the surge. As Jackson said, which I also believe is right, international students would be aware as well, that Australia is facing a skills shortage and see the opportunity not just to study in this country but possibly stay on and work after graduation.

MSM President

Suneetha has worked for 15 years in the international education sector and 25 years overall for her work for other industries. As president of MSM, she fortifies its business development outreach globally, particularly in the face of MSM’s foray into edtech-based recruitment via MSM Unify. She preserves the premium, value-adding services provided to each MSM partner institute, including dedicated teams on the ground, agent management, lead generation and inquiry management, application prescreening, and student and parent support through pioneering pre-departure briefing sessions.

She has an impeccable track record of successfully launching the representative offices in Asia and Africa of many North American and European higher education institutions. Her key strengths include hiring, training, and developing teams as evidenced by the successful results of the dedicated in-country college and university client teams.

Suneetha also has taken the lead in developing several initiatives at MSM, including building robust standard operating procedures, the Rise ‘n Shine team engagement platform, and the organization’s data analytics and audit segments.


Arora, A. (2023, January 19). India emerges as the largest group applying for student visas to Australia. SBS Punjabi. Retrieved from

Australia-India trade agreement strengthens our largest services export opportunities – Universities Australia. (2022, December 28). Universities Australia. Retrieved from

Department of home affairs website. (2023, February 21). Department of Home Affairs. Retrieved from


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