THE most affordable study destination in Asia is Malaysia’s capital, Kuala Lumpur. Is this true?
According to the latest Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) Best Student Cities Ranking 2023, Kuala Lumpur is Asia’s most affordable study destination, while being in 28th place globally as the best student cities to live in.
The capital, which is ranked sixth in Asia, moved up by three places in the 10th edition of the global ranking, beating cities like Beijing, Los Angeles, Adelaide and Taipei.
For the fourth consecutive year, London took the top spot. In Asia, Seoul, Tokyo and Hong Kong bagged the top three spots, respectively, while Singapore and Osaka came in fourth and fifth, respectively.
Education Malaysia Global Services (EMGS) chief executive officer Mohd Radzlan Jalaludin said this shows that Malaysia is on the right track to achieving the government’s target of having 250,000 international students in the country by 2025.
"It’s a positive outlook. With KL ranked as Asia’s most affordable study destination, the country will become a more attractive destination for families planning their children’s future tertiary education pathway.
"We are targeting to have 50,000 international students apply to study in Malaysian higher education institutions by the end of this year," he said, adding that last year, there were 40,000 applications.
During the EMGS’ 10th anniversary dinner on June 27, Higher Education Minister Datuk Seri Dr Noraini Ahmad said Malaysia remains as the preferred choice of destination for international students to further their studies.
She said although the number of applications to further studies in Malaysia slightly declined following the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020, the situation improved in 2021 with the number rising by some 32%.
"This was further strengthened when KL was ranked second in the QS Top Universities 'Most Affordable City for Students' for 2018 and 2019. In other words, the tuition costs are affordable," she said.
A total of 140 cities worldwide with a population of at least 250,000 are ranked annually.
Factors such as affordability, quality of life, university standard and the views of previous students who have studied in these destinations are taken into account.