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UK STUDY FEES MADE EASIER FOR CHINESE STUDENTS

UK STUDY FEES MADE EASIER FOR CHINESE STUDENTS IN BREAKTHOUGH COOPERATION
WITH LEADING ONLINE PAYMENT PROVIDER IN CHINA…

CHINESE STUDENTSChinese students preparing to study in Britain will find it easier and
cheaper to make payments for course fees, thanks to a deal struck between
a UK based firm and China’s most widely used third-party payment solution.

The collaboration — between Uni-Pay, which handles thousands of
transactions between international students and universities and English
language colleges every year, and Alipay, which has more than 700 million
registered accounts  – is believed to be the first of its kind involving a
UK education payment services company.

It means that students from all provinces in China will be able to pay
fees and deposits to UK institutions online in their own currency, rather
than via an international bank transfer in an alternative currency such as
US dollars.

Until now, Chinese students paying for courses in the UK have had to
accept the inconvenience and additional costs involved in bank transfers.
UK universities and English language colleges, which collectively
currently spend an estimated Ł35 million a year on banking and credit card
transactions to collect fees from international students, will not be
charged to use the new service.

Simon Read, Uni-Pay’s Managing Director, said the partnership represented
a significant breakthrough in the world’s largest market for the
recruitment of international students.

“China is still the UK’s biggest source of international students by far,
sending nearly 70,000 to study here last year. The arrangement we have
with Alipay should help make the UK an even more attractive study
destination, allowing Chinese students to pay fees through a trusted and
recognised local payment provider. At a time when the UK needs to work
hard on its reputation for welcoming genuine students, a development like
this that reduces costs and removes barriers has got to be seen as helpful
to all,” he said.

“Our cooperation with Uni-Pay is aimed at enabling more students in China
to pay study fees more conveniently,” said Jerry Sung, vice president of
International Business Department at Alipay. “We believe this
collaboration will remove an entrance barrier to the Chinese market faced
by such educational institutions, and this will mean that universities and
language schools outside of China can offer a much improved service to
Chinese students.”

Alipay has more than 700 million registered accounts and Uni-Pay, which
currently handles thousands of overseas student payments each year, is
expecting to see a significant rise in the number of transactions it
handles in China as a result of the new partnership. “For our university
customers 9% of all transactions in 2012 so far have been from students in
China” says Simon Read. “Now that we can enable educational institutions
to offer a local, recognised and trusted payment route to their largest
group of overseas students, we expect to see this rise to more like 20%,
in line with the fact that around 23% of overseas students last year were
from China”

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