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Australia has ‘nowhere near enough’ housing to cope with an influx of international students

An overwhelming influx of international students into Australia has prompted widespread concerns about the competency of housing and infrastructure in major cities.  

Last week, the Department of Education revealed that Australia has taken in a total of 525,000 students from overseas this year – a 12 per cent increase compared to last year, which itself saw a 10 per cent increase from 2016.

Such sustained growth is ruffling the feathers of urban planning experts, who are calling on the government and universities to allocate more adequate funding to student accommodation, ABC News reports. 

Last week, the Department of Education revealed that Australia has taken in a total of 525,000 students from overseas this year – a 12 per cent increase compared to 2017

‘There’s been quite a build-up of student accommodation, but it’s nowhere near enough,’ said Glen Searle, honorary associate professor in planning at Sydney University.

‘Universities, perhaps with some Federal Government funding, should be directing some of their fees into providing their own accommodation.’

Mr Searle further claimed that the government by now bears a ‘moral responsibility’ to deliver investment required by Australia’s immigration program.

Such sustained growth is ruffling the feathers of urban planning experts, who are calling on the government and universities to allocate more adequate funding to student accommodation

Such sustained growth is ruffling the feathers of urban planning experts, who are calling on the government and universities to allocate more adequate funding to student accommodation

 Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said 'There are around 200,000 more foreign students in Australia today than there were a few years ago'

 Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said ‘There are around 200,000 more foreign students in Australia today than there were a few years ago’

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull himself admitted the biggest driving factor of immigration growth in recent years had been the ongoing rise in foreign students.

‘There are around 200,000 more foreign students in Australia today than there were a few years ago,’ he said earlier this month. 

‘So if you feel there are more foreigners on the tram and you can’t get a seat on the tram, that is because of that.’

The Prime Minister’s statement points to one small symptom of a bigger population problem – and one that is only intensifying as more and more students flock to Australia’s education centres.

Recent data shows that the highest concentrations of Australia's newest migrants are packed in around university campuses and the inner suburbs in Melbourne and Sydney (pictured: University of Sydney)

Recent data shows that the highest concentrations of Australia’s newest migrants are packed in around university campuses and the inner suburbs in Melbourne and Sydney (pictured: University of Sydney)

This week, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) released data showing that the highest concentrations of Australia’s newest migrants are packed in around university campuses and the inner suburbs in Melbourne and Sydney. 

If Australia’s infrastructure development doesn’t rise to the demands of such immigration, it will only mean fewer seats on the tram for people in those areas.

Liz Allen, a demographer at the ANU Centre for Social Research & Methods, says the buck stops with the politicians.

‘I would be strongly urging people to be considered when they look at these figures,’ she said, ‘and not blame migrants, but rather hold politicians to account’.

A spokesperson for Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack, who is responsible for population issues, said the Federal Government was working with its state counterparts to address the challenges of population growth.

‘Future population growth, busting congestion and investing in projects to ensure people can get to home, university and work and back again sooner and safer is a key focus of the Government,’ they said. 

'I would be strongly urging people to be considered when they look at these figures, and not blame migrants, but rather hold politicians to account,' said Liz Allen, a demographer at the ANU Centre for Social Research & Methods

‘I would be strongly urging people to be considered when they look at these figures, and not blame migrants, but rather hold politicians to account,’ said Liz Allen, a demographer at the ANU Centre for Social Research & Methods



Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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