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Malaysia - An International Education Hub

by on 06/06/2018     521 1286

Growth in International Schools

Take us back approximately two decades ago, international schools were found scattered throughout geographically dispersed locations within the country. Take a look again today, the numbers have multiplied more than sixfold. The surge in international schools in Malaysia stems from governmental efforts towards achieving global competitiveness and becoming a high-income nation under the Economic Transformation Programme (ETP).

 

Championing International Education

As the country develops into a high-income nation, efforts to boost the international education market are made to meet the growing schooling needs of expatriates and repatriates, as well as the increasing demand of international education by local parents. In order to capitalize on these opportunities, restrictions on setting up private education institutions are liberalized. Foreign equity restrictions for the establishment of international schools are lifted; validity period of teaching permits is extended; tax incentives for companies setting up international schools are introduced; and the 40% quota on Malaysian student enrollment in international schools is removed. As a result, the number of new international schools, as well as expansion on existing schools, have grown in leaps and bounds.

 

A Regional Education Hub

Initiatives to position Malaysia as the preferred education destination include the development of two education hubs, namely, Kuala Lumpur Education City and EduCity at Iskandar. Both expansive educational enclaves bring together prestigious international institutions of higher learning for students of all ages. Education City is based in Kuala Lumpur and houses Epsom College in Malaysia and Universiti Sains Malaysia Global Campus. EduCity is located in Iskandar, Johor and it includes University of Southampton Malaysia, Marlborough College Malaysia, Newcastle University Medical Malaysia, University of Reading Malaysia, Raffles American School, Raffles University Iskandar and Netherlands Maritime Institute of Technology. In line with the aspirations of the ETP, these education hubs are established to propel economic growth by attracting foreign applicants. At the same time, they also look to retain local students who seek better education abroad.

 

Cost Effective Route to Quality International Education

International preschools leading up to local branch campuses of world-renowned universities enable students to harness international educational qualifications at lower tuition costs, if compared to similar academic programmes completed in Anglosphere countries. The globalization and diversification of this sector allows students to enjoy the cost benefits of local expenditure while attending their dream international university or degree. Malaysia makes a more economical option for overseas education as affordable living costs and inexpensive accommodation can yield substantial savings.  

 

  

Pathway to Global Opportunities

The existence of an abundance of English-speaking private education institutions, and English being an active second language, acts as a catalyst for cultivating English competent students. Such resources and supportive environments create a premier pathway to global career opportunities in the future.

 

Unique Multicultural Experience

For foreign students, Malaysia’s appeal lies in the confluence of varied cultures and a colourful heritage. The multicultural experience is enhanced by the composition of foreign students in international schools and other private education institutions. Exposure to such settings adds great value to student’s inventory of skills for being capable of interacting with diverse teams and being globally aware. Moreover, Malaysia’s strategic position makes us a great alternative for foreign students, particularly those from other Muslim countries, who are finding the West less accessible due to geopolitical shifts such as travel restrictions into the United States imposed for certain Muslim-predominant countries.

 

Sustainable Growth

The government will continue to facilitate local private education institutions in promoting Malaysia as an education hub for international education in sustainable terms. The growth of private education institutions and increased enrollment from both local families and expatriates will constitute to a trend likely to continue for many more years to come.