20 March 2024 at 9:00 am

International student enrolments top 59,000 for the first eight months of 2023

The Minister for Tertiary Education and Skills, Hon Penny Simmonds, today released international student enrolment data for the first eight months of 2023. From January to August 2023 there were 59,306 international student enrolments* with New Zealand education providers, a 43% increase compared to the full year in 2022.   

Minister Simmonds said, “Over 59,000 enrolments, in just eight months, confirms that international students continue to find New Zealand an attractive education destination. And for the university sector with 27,535 students enrolled, where a proportion of learners may study for a number of years, there is a solid base of students from which to grow.” 

International student enrolments have grown in all subsectors except wānanga. Comparing 2023 to 2022, English Language Schools have seen the greatest percentage increase in international enrolments, increasing by 347% from 1,565 to 7,001Schools reported a 114% increase from 5,925 to 12,662. Te Pūkenga, a 32% increase from 4,955 to 6,560. Universities, a 15% increase from 24,040 to 27,535 and Private Training Establishments (funded and unfunded), a 13% increase from 5,000 to 5,671. 

Universities and schools remained New Zealand’s two largest subsectors for international students.  

As with all New Zealand’s competitors, China is the largest source market for international students. In the reporting period, China was 36% of enrolments, with India (10%), Japan (10%), South Korea (5%), and Thailand (4%) in the top five. 

Minister Simmonds said, “It is a Government priority to diversify our recruitment efforts for international students with the aim of reaching a broader spectrum of countries.” 

Final enrolment numbers for 2023 will be available shortly. 

To access the latest data provided by the Ministry of Education, please use the public access link to Tableau here

* One individual may enrol more than once 



For further information: 

Justin Barnett | Director of Communications, Education New Zealand  

+64 21 875 132 

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