The New South Wales government is going to have a crack at bringing international students back this year.
AAP reports that under the plan before the NSW Department of Premier and Cabinet, overseas students would be quarantined in Sydney using purpose-built housing.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said in releasing the budget earlier this week that Australia’s borders would stay shut for the foreseeable future.
But Morrison said the Commonwealth was aware of the ambitious proposal.
“They’re still a long way from landing this I should stress,” he told Sydney radio 2GB on Thursday.
“But it’s something that we’re encouraging of but it’s got to be done safely and we’ve got to be able to do it in a way that doesn’t risk the great success we’ve had.”
NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet hopes international students will be back in lecture halls and tutoring sessions by the second semester.
“This is about finding a way to bring students back but not at the expense of the weekly cap of Australian citizens arriving back in NSW,” he told The Australian.
“If we don’t address this issue then I believe we’ll have an industry on its knees and one that will look elsewhere.”
The international student market is worth $14 billion a year to the NSW economy.