Financing Higher Education in Asia and Pacific

Feature | 7 November 2012

Rising costs in higher education are outstripping the capacity of students to pay for fees and of states to fund the sector, raising questions about how to make it more inclusive in the future. Here's a by the number look at some of the issues leading to rising higher education costs in the Asia and the Pacific region.

12-fold increase in the number of Asian students enrolled in higher education, which rose from 3.9 million in 1970 to 46.7 million in 2007. Southeast and East Asia now have 31% of global enrollments, the largest share globally.
Source: Counting the Cost - Financing Asian Higher Education for Inclusive Growth

450% increase of income from sources other than state subsidies in Thailand's public universities following the decline of state support after the regional currency crisis of the late 1990s.
Source: Counting the Cost - Financing Asian Higher Education for Inclusive Growth

3.3% of Indonesia's higher education students stem from the lowest 20% of income groups, whereas 30.9% come from the highest quintile.
Source: Counting the Cost - Financing Asian Higher Education for Inclusive Growth

1.7 million Vietnamese students had availed themselves of student loans by 2009, with no reported cases of dropout on financial grounds.
Source: Counting the Cost - Financing Asian Higher Education for Inclusive Growth

4 times higher income level. The monthly wage of an individual with a degree in Thailand is four times that of someone who has completed only primary schooling and more than double that of an individual who has completed the secondary level of education.
Source: Counting the Cost - Financing Asian Higher Education for Inclusive Growth

$5.1 billion spent by the People's Republic of China in 2004 to send its students to study in five leading countries - Australia, Canada, New Zealand, UK and US. In the same year, India is estimated to have spent close to $4 billion to support its students studying abroad.
Source: Counting the Cost - Financing Asian Higher Education for Inclusive Growth

500% planned increase in spending on higher and technical education in India in its current 5-year plan.
Source: Counting the Cost - Financing Asian Higher Education for Inclusive Growth

240,000 international students enrolled in the People's Republic of China, an almost six-fold increase over 1998, and around 40 times more than in 1988, when a mere 5,835 international students were enrolled in its universities.
Source: Counting the Cost - Financing Asian Higher Education for Inclusive Growth