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02-03-2011 21:08

Getting more students from developed countries

CYBERJAYA: Malaysia is gearing up to attract more students and teaching staff from developed countries.

Deputy Higher Education Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah said this would strengthen Malaysia's position as an education hub in the region.

"We want more students and lecturers from developed nations to come here. We are also inviting universities from countries like Belgium to set up branch campuses in Malaysia," he said after witnessing the signing of three memoranda of understanding between Belgian and Malaysian universities.

The MoUs were between HEC-University of Liege and NetAcademy; Haute Ecole de la Province de Liege and Multimedia University; and University of Brussels and Universiti Malaysia Terengganu.

The universities would cooperate in areas ranging from research to student exchange programmes.

Earlier, Saifuddin met Belgian Minister of Higher Education of the French Community Jean-Claude Marcourt as well as the representatives from the three Belgian universities.

Very few students from developed countries come to Malaysia to study. Last year, only 19 students from Australia came to Malaysia to pursue their tertiary education.

There were 20 students from Canada, 12 from France, 14 from Germany and three from Italy. The others included Japan (17), New Zealand (three), the United Kingdom (37), and the United States (57).

On the number of teaching staff from developed nations last year, there were 11 from Australia, 16 from Canada, nine from France, 16 from Germany, seven from Italy, 69 from Japan, 35 from the UK and 33 from the US.

Saifuddin also said two universities each from the US and the UK would set up branch campuses in Malaysia.

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