Australia bans international students

After spending months championing the quick return of international students, National Cabinet on Friday junked the idea, declaring that Australians stranded overseas must be brought home first:

Australians returning home

National Cabinet agreed to continue to prioritise the return of Australians.

Since the beginning of the pandemic over 414,000 Australians have returned to Australia on commercial flights, and 69 flights facilitated by the Department fo Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Since 18 September 2020, around 10,900 Australians registered with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade have returned to Australia. However, since 18 September 2020 the list of registered Australians has grown from 26,200 to 35,637. Between now and Christmas, we expect to bring an additional 27,000 Australians home. Further places will become available once Melbourne Airport reopens to international arrivals.

National Cabinet agreed international air passenger caps have played an important role in ensuring jurisdictions’ quarantine systems can protect Australians at home. The Commonwealth will be extending the international air passenger caps till 31 January 2020 for Sydney, Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide, with further increases to be made if and when additional quarantine places become available.

National Cabinet welcomed progress on plans by the Victorian Premier to reopen Melbourne to international travellers.

The Commonwealth and Northern Territory Government are finalising arrangements to increase capacity at the Howard Springs Quarantine Facility. Both the Australian Capital Territory and Tasmanian Governments have agreed to facilitate the return of 360 and 450 Australians respectively before Christmas.

Leaders agreed that, wherever possible, existing surge capacity for quarantine will remain in place for vulnerable Australians. The Queensland Government agreed to continue to surge above their weekly 1,000 passenger cap, and will now allow an additional 300 vulnerable Australians per week.

National Cabinet agreed a range of measures to support efforts to maximise the use of available seats to further boost the number of Australians who can return before Christmas. Going forward, caps and other arrangements will be implemented on a weekly basis and, in consultation with the relevant jurisdiction, an overallocation by up to 10 per cent above caps will be allowed.

The Commonwealth will continue to work with states and territories to facilitate the arrival of additional facilitated flights, carrying registered Australians and prioritising vulnerable Australians.

International Students

The National Cabinet agreed to continue prioritising returning Australians. Quarantine space must be prioritised to Australians, including vulnerable Australians, seeking to return home. While we look forward to welcoming international students back and will continue planning for their return, we cannot progress the broader entry of international students at this time.

However, Education Minister Dan Teehan continues to give the higher education sector hope:

Federal Education Minister Dan Tehan said jurisdictions have been asked to draw up plans how they can accommodate returning international students within their quarantine caps.

“Our priority is returning Australians and that will continue to be the case especially in the lead up to Christmas,” Mr Tehan told Sky News on Sunday.

“But we have asked state and territory governments to submit plans to us as to how they can bring in international students back.”

As expected, international students are crying foul:

Iffat Lamia, whose husband is an international student, waited in Bangladesh for 11 months to obtain student dependent visas for herself and her two-year-old daughter.

“But now we can’t go because of this travel ban,” she explained.

“My husband misses our daughter every single moment. He can’t come to us to spend his holidays. She Facetimes her daddy many times a day. She can’t talk properly but she misses her dad and cries for him.”

Lamia told The PIE that in their eight years of marriage, she and husband had never spent more than one week apart.

“Whereas now we have no idea when we are going to meet with each other again,” she said.

“Other countries have started to allow students and student dependants but Australia doesn’t give any information, no condolences, nothing at all.”

Banning international students entry into Australia is excellent policy:

  • It ensures that quarantine capacity is reserved for returning Australians;
  • It will not add to the oversupply in the labour market (helping to put a floor under wages);
  • It will reduce population pressures in the major cities (and enable governments to catch up on chronic infrastructure shortages);
  • It will force Australia’s universities, which eroded pedagogical standards and free speech in pursuit of international student dollars, to focus on educating Australians; and
  • It will reduce the risk of importing COVID-19 into Australia.

It’s good to see our governments finally put Australians first.

Unconventional Economist
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  1. In your dreams Leith.
    The borders will be flung open sooner than later, with this new free trade agreement probably on a scale that will make us nostalgic for 2018.
    Combined with the QE you guys have championed , asset prices to the moon and wages smashed. But hey everyone’s got to take one for the team.

  2. Pre-covid19 they said they had reduced the migration intake, they also said we’d have a gas reservation policy and a ICAC, they also said they would pass tranche 2 of the long awaited money laundering laws covering RE agents and lawyers

  3. Obviously they’ve bowed to reality in the short term. They’re not able to being in many foreign students so the financial benefit of doing so before getting all/most Aussies home would not outweigh the political cost of letting in foreign students before Aussies. We all know tptb want the international borders open asap but it is interesting to watch theprocess get delayed and delayed.

    • boomengineeringMEMBER

      Up early Poppy.
      We were in the city yesterday and saw a group of fresh Chinese, so obviously still getting in.

      • You must be in error. With their dual Australian/the china citizenship they are true blue dinky di aussies coming home or just going to where ever its more convenient to be at the moment. And i guess with a (possibly) safer vaccine coming out early for Australia they think this is the place to be rather than risk what ever rushed/stolen formula/fake results abomination Nazi China will make available for them.

        • boomengineeringMEMBER

          True Angry, could be mistaken due to non assimilation.
          btw late for surf this morn due to Poppy reply etc.

        • They are getting in, there’s a Indian EPC contractor (trading under a western sounding name) currently building a solar farm in Queensland, a long story but many Australian construction contractors have exited this sector of the renewable market due to extremely low returns. Over the past couple of months, they have managed to bring in engineers from India and China to work on the project. They started working remotely while stuck in hotel quarantine – good way to kill time I suppose.

      • I saw a bunch Indonesian looking tourist looking kids. Could have been a school group from interstate.

      • Up early so people can do their early morning swim (in a pool). Very windy but a glorious morning which I was completely enjoying until someone decided to get all precious about another pool user, but I expertly handballed it higher up on the food chain (I still had to write a witness statement though). I do not like dealing with that sort of [email protected] and am happy to stay at the bottom of the food chain in order to avoid it

  4. This is scummo playing politics. Something must be going on behind the scenes. If he had party support or the public didnt care he would open the borders to international students.
    What id like to know is how porous are our borders now with this new so called rip off free trade deal he signed us up to yesterday. Is there anything in there that stops us from blocking incoming typhoid mary’s.

    the other thing that annoys me is the sheer entitled mentality of these people.
    ” Australia doesn’t give any information, no condolences, nothing at all”
    Is this a case of having paid their money to come here and get a fake dumbed down degree and there fore this lady thinks they are automatically citizens. Is that what the smugglers … i mean migration agents tell them.
    Lady just tell your daughter her father is here doing vital work for the country driving a uber alongside the other 90k student uber drives with IT degrees.

    • I'll Stir Fry You in My Woke

      Was in Byron on Saturday (oh how I’ve missed Kinoko) and there were a lot of Euro and US and UK accents – have they been stuck here all this time ?

      Lot of 4 wheel Euro bling too .

        • I'll Stir Fry You in My Woke

          Well, I’m not averse to the idea of owning a BMW X5, Merc, Audi or Cayenne supervagon, are you?

      • Letting the world’s elite buy real estate or emigrate here is not in our country’s interests, except the interests of other elites of course.

        When the dumb poor are voting for the same things as the elites, you can be sure it’s dodgy and that it’s predetermined that one side is going to win and the other lose.

        Vote against it.

      • They’re the ones that could afford to move there now the locals have been priced out. Sell house in home country (London/Toronto/most expensive US), buy decent place in Byron with money left over, proceed to ruin the place by making it just like home.

  5. ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

    Ive noticed everyone has chosen to not consider the fate of poor old Iffat.
    What is Iffat to do?

      • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

        I don’t know about that. I think Bangladesh already has an oversupply of fruit pickers.

    • This virus has generated so much fear that the locals are happy not to be allowed to travel, they are happy for other locals not to be allowed to travel even where they have dying relatives overseas and they are happy to have other citizens unable to return home.
      That gives Iffat no chance.

      • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

        Is No chance really a fair statement?
        I mean she has the same chances as 164 million other bangladeshis.

        • If not more as hubby would be sending to her the bulk of his Australian award level pay that he gets from working a maximum of 20 hours a week (is that still a thing or have they given up even the pretense of that rule?). I knew a bloke who worked in the oil fields in Gaddafi’s Libya, in terms of pay a couple of years there was like a decade or so working here.

          • No chance a Bangladeshi ‘student’ is being paid award rates or working just 20 hours a week.

            Australia has been running this third world slave labour ‘racket’ for almost 20 years.

    • Consume a lower calorie diet?

      I’ve got a mate who’s an international 747 freight skipper. Based in Asia, but commutes from Australia – in normal times. Hasn’t been home for 6 months as he’d have to quarantine for his entire off roster period. Sacrifices everywhere you look Iffat.

  6. This is pure marketing from Sco Mo. Wait and see what actually happens versus what he says today.

    • Great news – we need a few small virus leaks to keep us on our toes. Also, if it leaks from returned Aussies just wait to see the leaks when those international students come …

      • So the infected 80 yr old went to emergency where 90 other people were waiting, then to the supermarket with god knows how many more, plus her relos also out and about….

        Pfft. Off it goes. Expect Scummo to lose next election if students bring it in tho….

  7. “It’s good to see our governments finally put Australians first.” – no they don’t. Scmmo and firends realised it was politically damaging so they dropped the idea. To me this the first clear sign Scummo is planning early elections. Let me be clear on this Scummo and friends don’t give a flying fck about us, they only care about their pockets.

    • It was hidden way down in the minor news. You’ve got to laugh. MSM, LNP, Labor all working to feed the elites our country at our expense.

      Slickric….”When the dumb poor are voting for the same things as the elites, you can be sure it’s dodgy and that it’s predetermined that one side is going to win and the other lose”….

    • Sad but likely true. We need the working rights to be tightened up to discourage many from coming here.

  8. Charles MartinMEMBER

    yeah, nah, there is some bullschit going on in the background if Tehan is involved. Hell, if any politician is onvolved, there is bullschit going on in the background. Can’t trust any of ’em.

    • I wouldn’t trust the public servants much more either to be honest. All probably drink the kool aid that immigration is good, international students are good … they will be moving heaven and earth to bring some here.

      Nothing worse than someone who can make difference thinking they are doing Dogs work. The road to hell is paved with good intentions etc etc.

  9. Enjoy it while it lasts. NZ borders are already wide open. 1 in 10 quarantine places are now reserved for foreign migrant workers. And the parent visa has been expanded.
    “Labour will open up our settings to get more people into the country, while maintaining robust controls at the border,” it said.
    “Labour will review immigration criteria to enable a broader range of workers to enter New Zealand [and] establish a new Investment Attraction Strategy to encourage targeted and high-value international investment into New Zealand.
    “Labour will reduce barriers to access the parent category visa, including reconsidering the current provisions once the international flow of people across the border settles, and reducing the income thresholds.”

      • And they’ve done this in the midst of high unemployment, a record public housing waitlist, and a 20% rise in house prices in the last few months.

        • It’s blows the mind that this is actually happening under these circumstances. What have we fallen from in both of our societies? We aren’t governed for the people already here that’s for sure, just certain elites and foreigners