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Commenting on the HESA statistical release, Bright Blue researcher James Dobson said:

“The decline in enrolments from undergraduates outside the EU demonstrates the impact of including international students in the net migration target. International students contribute huge amounts to the British economy, as a result of paying fees as well as buying goods and services in Britain.

“Evidence shows that the public do not want to see fewer foreign students studying at our Higher Education institutions. The Government should remove students from the net migration target.

“Worryingly for Universities, the HESA statistics also show that the number of UK undergraduate students increased by just 0.3% while the number of undergraduates from the EU increased by 6.5%. If our universities are to remain among the best in the world, then the Government must ensure that EU students can continue to study in the UK post-Brexit.”

ENDS

Notes to editors:

For further media enquiries, please contact our Communications Manager of Bright Blue, Laura Round, on laura@brightblue.org.uk or 07543759844.