Give scholarships to attract foreign students, says education firm

Education Malaysia Global Services CEO Rujhan Mustafa (centre) says Malaysia is facing tough competition from China and UAE in attracting foreign students.

KUALA LUMPUR: A government-owned education company tasked with attracting foreign students to study here has proposed that higher learning institutions give out more scholarships to foreign students.

Education Malaysia Global Services (EMGS) CEO Rujhan Mustafa said awarding full or partial scholarships to foreign students was one of the strategies the company had suggested to the Council of Eminent Persons.

“Many competitor countries such as China and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have popped up now to be educational hubs.

“They are offering scholarships to whoever wants to study there. And we should have the same strategy to be attractive to students,” he told reporters after meeting the council today.

Rujhan said there were about 171,000 foreign students in various universities and colleges in the country, and EMGS wanted to increase this to 200,000 by 2020.

“We are still one of the top choices for foreign students because of the affordable tuition fees and education quality.

“But with China and UAE as competitors, we will need to take another look at our strategies.”

Former higher education minister Idris Jusoh said last year that Malaysia could be the world’s education hub in 20 years’ time if the “momentum in the higher education field is positive”.