Do foreigners take advantage of a student visa to settle in France?

Eric Ciotti, guest of franceinfo Thursday, February 13. & Nbsp;
Eric Ciotti, guest of franceinfo Thursday, February 13. (FRANCEINFO / RADIOFRANCE)

While France is the fifth country in the world which receives the most foreign students, the deputy Les Républicains Eric Ciotti suggested that some took advantage of a student visa to settle in France rather than on the benches of the university . "Today, there are more than 90,000 foreign students in our country. We were still, a few years ago, at 50,000. We must measure that this is not a roundabout way to introduce oneself in France" , he said on February 13 on Franceinfo. This statement is false and the True False cell of franceinfo explains why.

In France in 2018, there are approximately 350,000 foreign students, according to France Campus, a government agency which must promote French higher education worldwide. This figure is increasing but we are far from the 90,000 that Eric Ciotti talks about. The deputy LR confused the number of foreign students with the number of residence permits granted to young people, outside the European Union, to study in France.

Almost half of the foreign students in France come from Africa, mainly from Morocco and Algeria. This is mainly due to the very young population of these countries, which is experiencing a boom in the number of students. It is then the Chinese who represent the third contingent of foreign students in France.

If the number of student visas has increased in recent years in France, this also corresponds to a global dynamic. Students around the world are increasingly studying abroad. In most developed countries, the number of foreign students is increasing sharply, if not sharply.

Screen capture of the Campus France document which details the increase in foreign students in the countries that host the most. & Nbsp;
Screen capture of the Campus France document which details the increase in foreign students in the countries that host the most. (CAMPUS FRANCE)

According to an INSEE study, which dates from 2017, students leave faster today than in the early 2000s. They often come for a year of exchange and more than half leave France in two or more years. three years, which corresponds to their school curriculum. INSEE also notes that fewer and fewer foreign students ask to stay for family reasons and that a tiny minority settles down to work.