Coronavirus: Taiwan stops admission of foreign students
Taiwan has decided to temporarily halt allowing institutions from granting admissions to foreign students as it grapples with the Coronavirus outbreak.
Taiwan’s higher education institutions have decided to suspend their plans to admit foreign students into the country.
The decision of when to allow these students to return to Taiwan is being delayed until the COVID-19 pandemic shows signs of easing its spread across the globe.
The institutions are further delaying this decision, stating that they will only allow the admission of foreign students when the global pandemic shows clear signs of abating.
Only after that will enrolled international students be permitted to begin their university courses or, in the case of students in their second or third years, return to Taiwan to recommence their studies.
In the announcement, as reported by CNA News, Taiwan’s Ministry of Education (MOE) stated that ‘the country will wait until there are clearer signs of the COVID-19 pandemic abating globally before it lifts restrictions on international students’.
Taiwan will consider allowing foreign students to enter only when there are clearer signs of Coronavirus outbreak abating globally
This decision means that the 26,000 international students studying at Taiwan’s HEIs are still not permitted to return to participate in their courses.
Furthermore, CNA News stated that, if the government were to allow the return of international students to Taiwan, this would be wholly dependent on Taiwan’s testing capacity and dormitory availability.
This announcement comes despite the fact that, earlier this same week, the MOE previously intended to remove travel restrictions and so permit the return of international students (from countries that have had fewer cases of COVID-19) as soon as July.
However, at a cross-departmental Cabinet meeting that was held on 3 June, this plan was retracted, due to the ongoing severity of the global pandemic.
Taiwan an increasingly popular study abroad destination
Over recent years, Taiwan has become an increasingly popular destination for international study.
We previously reported that the number of Indian students in Taiwan experienced a huge rise of 56% in just one year (2017-18).
In the data provided to Global Education Times by the Taiwan Ministry of Education, the number of Indian students enrolled on programmes in Taiwan experienced a staggering 15-year total growth of almost 48,000%.
This increasing popularity as a study destination is largely attributed to the incredibly low cost of their courses (with two semesters of education costing approximately US$1,500 in a national university).
According to Taiwan News, on June 7, Taiwan’s Coronavirus taskforce will begin easing their pandemic control measures, including the consideration of plans to loosen current border controls.
As it stands, Taiwan has not recorded a local case of COVID-19 for over 50 days.
Pic: Will Porada
Josephine Walbank is a reporter for Global Education Times (GET News) with a focus on education in the UK, Asia-Pacific, and Americas, and student experience and lifestyle news.
Josephine is an experienced journalist who previously served as the Editor-in-Chief of The Falmouth Anchor. She is also the former Deputy Editor of Voices, the Falmouth & Exeter Students’ Union’s publication, and has written for various food and lifestyle publications.
You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org