New Zealand's lucrative international education sector is set for a boost as over 230 of the world's leading education agents from 49 countries fly in to meet with representatives from 192 local and Australian institutions at the Australia New Zealand Agent (ANZA) Workshop to be held at SKYCITY Convention Centre in Auckland on April 22-24, 2009. The favourable exchange rate is just one factor attracting international education agents to New Zealand for this sell-out event. Rob McKay, Chairman of English New Zealand, says agents are likely to be highly motivated to form new partnerships with NZ institutions. He said, 'At this time of financial turbulence it is great to see the commitment to New Zealand of the registered agents. This is a great chance to meet with key supporters of our sector.' However, while almost half the agents attending the ANZA Workshop 09 represent Asian countries, Middle Eastern countries are demonstrating a strong interest in New Zealand as a safe, tolerant and socially acceptable study destination for their students.
A number of Saudi agents are coming to the ANZA Workshop following the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's accreditation of a range of programs delivered by local universities, polytechnic and technology institutions. Closer to home, an increase in Vietnamese students interested in New Zealand as a study destination is prompting Vietnamese broadcaster, VCTV1, to film the ANZA Workshop for an upcoming episode of their national 'Study Overseas' programme. New Zealand's international education sector employs over 32,000 people and accounts for more than NZ$2.3 billion dollars per year in export earnings, making it a rising star in these days of economic gloom. However, Education New Zealand CEO Robert Stevens says the industry's value goes well beyond its export earnings. The ANZA Workshop is organized by ICEF and EdMedia, and alternates each year between New Zealand and Australia.