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Education exports without a safety net

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International student fees are "uninsurable" according to the former CEO of the Australian Council for Private Education and Training. Tim Smith said no one was willing to underwrite the government's Educational Services for Overseas Students Assurance Fund, designed to guarantee student fees and protect Australia's most valuable service export, education. "The consumer protection mechanism is an unholy mess. If you've got a fund that's broke and an industry that can't place the students, how can it work?" asked Smith. Former underwriters AIG did not renew its contract last November.

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