TRADE and education exhibition specialist Exhibitions Promotion and Management (M) Sdn Bhd (EXPAM) will embark on an eight-country roadshow next year to promote Malaysian tertiary education in line with the government’s target to raise the number of foreign students in the country from the current 36,000 to 50,000 by 2005.
The roadshow will kick off in Male, Maldives, in February before moving to Sri Lanka and South Africa in March, Bangladesh in July, Iran and Yemen in August, Mauritius in September, and Indonesia in October.
About 30 delegates representing some 10 Malaysian universities and colleges will be participating in the most aggressive ever overseas promotion of the country as a tertiary education destination.
The education industry is seen as a high growth sector with great potential to become a major foreign exchange earner for Malaysia.
The Education Ministry’s statistics showed that there were students from more than 30 countries studying in Malaysia in 2002 with the majority coming from China, Indonesia, India and Thailand.
According to EXPAM chief executive officer Abdul Kabur Ibrahim, Malaysia is strongly positioned in the Asian region to tap the growing market for high quality education.
He said the country had numerous advantages compared to some other education exporting countries in the region.
First, Malaysia is a socially, economically and politically stable English-speaking country with well developed infrastructure and very affordable cost of living.
It also had a wide range of study options, including numerous twinning programmes with prestigious universities in Australia, Britain, Canada and the United States, Kabur said.
“Third, being a multi-racial and multi-cultural country with a very cosmopolitan character, foreign students had fewer problems settling in quickly,” he said.
Kabur said that following the success of EXPAM's Malaysian Education Exhibition in Yemen in August this year, the company planned to “go all out in 2004.''
“There is a potentially huge market to be tapped as many Middle East, Islamic and Third World countries now see Malaysia as a place for quality tertiary education at affordable prices,'' he said.
Kabur said the programme at each destination of the roadshow comprised a two-day exhibition followed by official visits to the country’s Education Ministry and selected schools and colleges.
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