The impact of international students on the Australian job market has been revealed, following new research from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
As many as 40,000 students from overseas rely on the hospitality sector for income, based on calculations from Australian National University migration researcher Henry Sherrell using the new ABS research released last week.
The research links employment data from the Census to addresses and biographic details of temporary visa holders to provide the first ever large scale insight into the working lives of visitors to Australia.
It shows more than one in three foreign students reported having jobs in the 2011 Census. Approximately 15 per cent of these were hospitality workers, 11 per cent were cleaners and laundry workers, 10 per cent were sales assistants and eight per cent were food preparation assistants.
The Department of Immigration does not track the work of international students. These students can work up to 20 hours per week during semester and unlimited hours during semester breaks.
While it’s likely that some foreign students are “substituting” for young Australians in these jobs, Mr Sherrell said it was a complicated field of study and it’s too soon to call for reform.
“The hard thing about this stuff, is if you take backpackers and international students, they’re often working for non-wage incentives like residency, while Australians are much more driven, especially at a young age, by wage considerations,” he said.
(Source: SBS Australia)