Chinese student
In 2022, there has been an increase of 12% of Chinese students applying to UK universities, now overtaking applicants from Wales. Source: Eduardo Leal / AFP

More Chinese students are applying to UK universities, increasing by 12% from 25,810 in 2021 to 28,930 in 2022. This makes China the second-largest market of international students for UK universities after the European Union.

According to UCAS figures, the number of Chinese students has overtaken the number of applicants from Wales. Compared to China’s 28,930 students, Wales only had 21,020 applicants to UK universities.

“While applications have been very resilient throughout the pandemic, the robust demand from China, India, and Hong Kong shows the enduring appeal of our world-class universities, with our recent report indicating that nearly nine in 10 still view the UK as an attractive place to study,” says Clare Marchant, chief executive of UCAS.

The number of Indian students looking to study in the UK has increased by 11% from 7,820 last year to 8,660 in 2022. Source: Prakash Singh / AFP

Other figures from UCAS

The number of Indian students looking to study in the UK has increased by 10.7% from 7,820 last year to 8,660 in 2022. The number of Nigerian applicants rose the most — 46.9% — with 2,380 from 1,620 applicants.

The EU has expectedly seen a decrease in application numbers due to Brexit, from 25,740 applicants down to 20,820. However, Ireland applicants grew by 5% to 5,100 students.

There are fewer US applicants as well, dropping by 1,400 and now totalling 5,280, despite last year’s rapid growth. However, Canada had a substantial increase of 17.8% with around 2,400 applicants.

Singapore and Malaysia have bounced back after recording decreasing numbers over the years — they are up by  6.9% and 5.4% respectively, reaching over 3,000 applicants each.