New Delhi: The number of Indian students to be granted study permit by Canada’s immigration agency, exceeded 100,000 for the second consecutive year. In 2019, Canada approved a little over 400,000 study permits of which 139,000 or 34.5% went to Indian students, followed by Chinese who bagged 21% of the new study permits. In 2018, Canada had granted a total of 355,000 study permits - the newly released figures for 2019 signify an overall increase of 13.8% over the previous year.
An analysis of the past three years shows that while the number of Chinese students to be granted a study permit has shown a miniscule decline, the inflow of students from India is steadily on the rise. The number of Chinese students to be granted study permits in 2019, at 84,710 was slightly lower than the previous year’s figure of 85,165. In contrast the number of Indian students to be granted study permit has increased by 30.3% to 139,000, over the previous year’s figure of 107,000. With just 82,990 permits granted to Indian students in 2017, it reflects a 68.3% increase over two years.
Canada is increasingly attracting more foreign students. This can be attributed to various factors such as uncertainties relating to optional training programmes (OPT) for international students in US - some of these issues were settled via court intervention. Post completion of US studies there are also challenges in obtaining an H-1B visa (the most commonly used work visa) for those at the entry level.
Karan Gupta, a study abroad career counsellor, said, “If a student studies in Canada he or she is more likely to land a well-paying job and settle down in the country. This is the primary reason for the numbers going up.” He added that the country is perceived to be safe and welcoming of foreigners.