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UK study visas issued to Indians record 93 per cent jump


Over 37,500 Indian students received visas to pursue academics in the UK last year, a rise of 93 per cent compared to 2018 when only 19, 497 visas were granted, according to the country’s immigration records (Photo: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images).
Over 37,500 Indian students received visas to pursue academics in the UK last year, a rise of 93 per cent compared to 2018 when only 19, 497 visas were granted, according to the country’s immigration records (Photo: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images).

THE number of British study visas issued to Indian students has witnessed a jump of 93 per cent, latest data showed on Thursday (27).

Over 37,500 Indian students received visas to pursue their academics in the UK last year, a rise of 93 per cent compared to 2018 when only 19, 497 visas were granted, according to the country’s immigration records.

The latest data represents the largest number of visas issued to Indian students over the last eight years and continues the strong upward trend in student visa numbers since 2016.

Indians are currently the fastest-growing nationality for student visas.

Indian nationals also received over 57,000 tier 2 skilled work visas last year. This accounts for over half of all skilled work visas granted globally – meaning more were granted to Indians than the rest of the world combined.

Jan Thompson, acting high commissioner to India, said: “This phenomenal increase in student visa numbers is testament both to the UK’s world-leading education system and to the exceptional talents of Indian students. We couldn’t be prouder that the best and brightest continue to pick the UK, making the living bridge between our countries stronger each day.”

Meanwhile, the UK continues to be a popular destination for Indian holidaymakers. More than 515,000 Indian nationals received visit visas last year – an eight per cent increase compared to the previous year.

In 2019, 95 per cent of Indian citizens who applied for a UK visa were successful, a rise of five per cent on the previous year.

Barbara Wickham, Director India, British Council, said: “…These statistics follow a series of visa policy announcements by the UK, including the establishment of a new graduate route (allowing eligible students to stay in the UK for two years post-study) and the introduction of a new points-based immigration system.”

Indians are the second most common nationality to be granted the study visas after Chinese.