NSW shafts Aussies for international students

The NSW Government has lodged a plan to use one third of the state’s 3,000 hotel quarantine places to import international students:

The NSW government is taking a plan to national cabinet to bring up to 1000 international students a week into Sydney starting in the new year…

The students, to arrive on charter flights, will use up nearly one-third of the state’s 3000 passenger a week limit on overseas entries…

The plan is strongly backed by NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian because of the economic benefit it will bring NSW…

The NSW move was welcomed by International Education Association of Australia chief executive Phil Honeywood.

“The sector really respects the NSW premier’s commitment to bringing students back early in the new year. There is every chance now that NSW will become the market leader if other states plans do not place emphasis on adequate student numbers,” he said.

The arriving students will need to spend two weeks in quarantine, and some universities are willing to pay the $3000 quarantine cost on the students’ behalf…

The Morrison government, which controls immigration, will need to approve the plan but federal Education Minister Dan Tehan said “we want to work with states and territories to see what we can do to get international students returning after Christmas”.

This is a terrible plan on multiple levels.

First, there are still tens of thousands stranded abroad wanting to return home. So, allowing international students to take one third of hotel quarantine places is an obvious betrayal of the obligations of government.

Second, NSW’s hotel quarantine system is already at breaking point:

The NSW hotel quarantine scheme has been beset with thousands of incidents, with 169 security guards sacked and at least four overseas arrivals absconding from facilities, confidential government operational updates show.

Minutes of an October 30 meeting between NSW government officials and security company representatives also show a looming crisis in the quarantine program with contractors warning they are unable to reliably extend beyond 820 daily deployments.

We have witnessed these strains first hand with a NSW quarantine worker contracting the virus last week, as well as the two international arrivals that over the weekend broke quarantine in Sydney to travel into Melbourne.

Third, importing international students into NSW when the state’s labour underutilisation is so high would be an unmitigated disaster for the working class. It would reduce workers’ bargaining power, increase unemployment, crush wage growth, and lift rents (other things equal).

Fourth, the NSW Government should be cognisant of the fact that NSW residents do not want more immigration. This was made abundantly clear in last year’s Newspoll survey, which showed that 80% of voters do not want the state’s population to increase, with majority support across all three major political parties:

Finally, it is wholly unfair to subsidise international students’ hotel quarantine costs when returning Australian citizens and permanent residents are required to pay $3,000 for their stays.

When foreign students carry more weight than returning Australians, you know the NSW Government has been corrupted.

Unconventional Economist
Latest posts by Unconventional Economist (see all)

Comments

  1. allowing international students to take one third of hotel quarantine places is an obvious betrayal of the obligations of government.

    Understatement of the year. Borderline treasonous is what it is.

  2. SnappedUpSavvyMEMBER

    no different to how gladys has been treating us for years now

    sydney is so much nicer without half a million students pushing you out of the way

    • Mining BoganMEMBER

      I don’t believe for a second that this is a Gladys idea. Scummo knows that one word from him about her corruption and she’s gone. This is him getting her to float the idea.

  3. HRH’s daily lobbying in the AFR tells you who is the main driver. That and ‘economic benefit’ and all that.

    • would seem so!
      (but some uni bloke once said they would be willing to pay for it … (so that they can get a good press release & then not actually pay a cent))

  4. Any word on who the German and her son are?

    If they’re dual national Australian and German they would have called them Australian.

    It is as dodgy as everything else our government does. MSM have dropped it, making it even dodgier.

  5. 1000 a week is 4000 a month.
    It is objectionable and morally wrong but the numbers are peanuts in the scheme of things.
    Hundreds of thousands come in during feb and march normally.

    Also note that Scummo is being tricky by getting the states to ask for it. He knows it is toxic so will burn the Premiers.

    • 4000 extra bodies on the roads, renting/buying apartments etc – all has an effect.

      It’s all incremental/boiling frog stuff so people won’t notice. IMO it’s conditioning people to return to normalcy as returning to Feb/March numbers overnight won’t fly.

      • Mr SquiggleMEMBER

        4,000 per month returning Australians would also generate more economic activity. They will also need to be fed clothed housed, have road trips etc

  6. it is wholly unfair to subsidise international students’ hotel quarantine costs…

    I read 2x and I do not see where from is that tax money is subsidising.

    It is beyond confusion as to why existing facilities will need to be used when there are so many hotels or other facilities that can expand capacity 10 fold by snapping fingers.

    • The constraint is not the number of rooms in hotels it is the medical and security staff (police/ADF) to keep the quarantine from leaking like Melbourne and Adelaide.

  7. Each and every day my dislike of politicians grows. To treat your own people as disposable is both disgusting and depressing. So what jobs are these talentless wonders going to do to support themselves?