24 March 2014

Nicholas Soames (Mid Sussex, Conservative)

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what estimate she has made of the change in the number of non-EUstudents issued visas to study at UK universities in the last five years.

James Brokenshire (Minister of State (Home Office) (Security and Immigration); Old Bexley and Sidcup, Conservative)

holding answer 17 March 2014

Since 2010 we have made common sense reforms to our student visa system, cutting out abuse whilst ensuring that we continue to attract talented international students to our world class universities.

Available figures of applications for visas for study using sponsor acceptances at UK universities during the last four years (2010 to 2013) show that there has been an increase in each year, rising by 7% from 156,629 in 2012 to 167,995 in 2013 and for students sponsored by the Russell Group of universities this rose by 11%. These figures are published as part of the latest quarterly Immigration Statistics October to December 2013 in table cs 09 available at:


Data published by the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) indicates that first year non-EU students enrolling at UK higher education institutions (HEIs) increased by 36% between 2007-08 and 2012-13. These figures are available from the HESA website at:


(Citation: HC Deb, 24 March 2014, c18W)