The number of Nigerian students granted sponsored study visas to the UK has increased by over 100 percent in one year.
According to the UK government, Nigeria accounts for 25 percent of the total number of foreign nationals who are on scholarships in the country.
Within a year — June 2020 to June 2021 — the number of Nigerian students in the UK who received sponsored grants doubled by 125 percent, with over 11,000 study visas granted within the period under review.
The UK government said, in June 2020, the number of Nigerian students was 9,066, but by June 2021, the figure rose to 20,427.
In terms of percentage increase, Nigeria has the third highest number of nationalities on sponsored visa grants, after China and India.
“While many nationalities saw decreases in Sponsored study grants in the latest year, some experienced substantial increases,” information from the UK government website reads.
“Nigerian nationals continue to see an increase in Sponsored Study grants compared to the previous year, increasing to a record high of 20,427, making them the third largest nationality group granted Sponsored study visas this year, an increase of 11,361 (+125%) on the year ending June 2020.
“This is the second largest increase in numbers of grants, after Indian nationals.
“In the year ending June 2021, three nationalities accounted for more than two thirds (72%) of Sponsored study dependants: India (39%), Nigeria (25%), and Saudi Arabia (9%).
“Despite having more Sponsored study visas granted than any other single country, China only had 266 dependants granted a visa in this route, less than 1% the total dependants granted, and less than 0.3% of the total grants for Chinese nationals.”
Meanwhile, the US saw a decline in the number of its students going to study in the UK on scholarships, after it recorded a 25 percent decrease.
China still has the highest number of students on UK scholarships with 95,408 in June 2021, compared to 86,651 as of June 2020.