Pakistan’s education demand provides opportunity for UK higher education

Islamabad: The British Council launched its “Mapping International Student Mobility from Pakistan” report at an event in Islamabad.

The report, aimed at unravelling the dynamics of student mobility to the UK, revealed crucial insights that will shape the future landscape of educational collaboration across Pakistan.

A gap between supply and demand in Pakistan’s tertiary education proposition is driving its university-age population overseas. Other important findings of the report include:

  • The top three factors for students from Pakistan are enhanced career prospects, quality education, and funding.
  • Despite being the world’s third-largest university-age population, enrolment rates at the tertiary level in Pakistan remain below the global average.
  • Many of the urban centres like Lahore, Karachi, and Islamabad emerged as the primary contributors to international student mobility, collectively accounting for approximately half of the students moving abroad.
  • The report emphasised the role of enhanced career prospects, quality education, and post-study work opportunities as key factors motivating students to study abroad.
  • Transnational Education (TNE) is an increasingly considered alternative for undergraduate studies, with 36% of surveyed students factoring it into their decision-making process.

The launch event was attended by the British High Commissioner to Pakistan, Jane Marriott CME OBE, Country Director British Council Pakistan, James Hampson, representatives from UK Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) and policymakers.

British High Commissioner, Jane Marriott CMG OBE, said:

“It is wonderful that so many Pakistanis are able to take advantage of the world-class education offered by UK universities. As this report highlights though, there is more to be done to make sure that UK universities are accessible to students across the whole of Pakistan. I am grateful to the British Council for their work understanding and tackling those barriers.”

James Hampson, Country Director British Council Pakistan said:

“This report is a significant step towards informed decision-making for all stakeholders and is a testament to the work the British Council is doing to improve access to international opportunities for students across Pakistan. Collaborative efforts are needed to understand and shape the future of international student mobility and our report is an important step forward in that area.”

The UK is proud to offer scholarships which support Pakistani students to study in the UK, including the Chevening, Commonwealth, and Charles Wallace Pakistan Trust scholarships.