Deakin University has four campuses in Australia and has many students from India.
The International Financial Services Centre Authority (IFSCA) on Friday said it has given approval to Deakin University of Australia to set up its campus in Gujarat's GIFT City.
With this, Deakin became the first foreign university to get a nod to set up its campus in India.
"We have given approval to Deakin University to set up its campus in GIFT City," chairperson of the IFSCA Injeti Srinivas told PTI.
Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese will make an official announcement about it during a function to be held in Gandhinagar on March 8, a source from Deakin University said.
"This is the first university that will set up its campus in India," Mr Srinivas said.
The IFSCA is a unified authority for the development and regulation of financial products, financial services and financial institutions in the International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) in India. At present, the GIFT IFSC is the maiden international financial services centre in India.
"We are expecting many more foreign universities to set up their campuses here. We are in talks with another Australian university and a UK-based university that have shown interest in setting up campuses here in GIFT City," he said.
This is a major development as the university will offer the same courses as they are offering in Australia at a fraction of cost, Mr Srinivas said, adding that students will highly benefit from it.
Australian Prime Minister Albanese is expected to visit Gujarat on March 8 and 9. PM Narendra Modi is also scheduled to come to Gujarat on March 9. Both the prime ministers are also likely to watch the fourth test between India and Australia starting on March 9 at the Narendra Modi Stadium here in the city.
On March 1, Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan had announced that two Australian universities - Wollongong and Deakin - would soon establish campuses in the GIFT City.
The Gujarat International Finance Tec-City (GIFT City) is an emerging global financial and IT services hub, a first of its kind in India, designed to be at or above par with globally benchmarked business districts.
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had announced in her budget speech of February 2022 that foreign universities and institutions will be allowed to set up campuses in India. They will be allowed in the GIFT City first, she had said.
In June 2022, the IFSCA had said in a release that in its endeavour to develop a comprehensive and consistent regulatory framework for establishment of International Branch Campuses (IBC) and Offshore Education Centres (OEC) by Foreign universities or foreign institutions in the GIFT IFSC has drafted regulations based on global best practices and is seeking public comments on the proposed draft regulations.
"After we framed the regulations for setting up IBC and OEC, many foreign universities had shown interest," a source in the IFSCA said.
University Grants Commission (UGC) is also in the process of framing regulations for foreign universities to set up campuses in India. However, IFSCA regulations will govern the foreign university campuses established in GIFT City area of Gandhinagar.
Deakin University is ranked 266 in QS world university ranking and is also ranked among top 50 young universities. It has four campuses in Australia and has many students from India who go to study in those campuses.
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