The first group of 150 Korean students from rural areas have arrived in New Zealand for English-language tuition under the Korea-New Zealand free trade agreement.

 

The students will spend eight weeks attending intermediate and high schools and staying with homestay families throughout the Waikato, Nelson-Marlborough and Canterbury regions.

They were welcomed by Korean Ambassador to New Zealand Kim Hae-yong, the Counsel-General from Auckland Cha Chang-soon, Korea Agency of Education, Promotion and Information Service in Food, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (EPIS) President Park Chul-soo, and Education NZ General Manager International Peter Bull.

Earlier, Ambassador Clare Fearnley and EPIS President Park had farewelled the students with their parents at a pre-departure briefing in Sejong City.

Ambassador Fearnley congratulated the lucky students on being selected for the programme and said it was a potentially life-changing opportunity to immerse themselves in a new culture, new language, and new experiences.  She wished the students a safe and enjoyable visit to New Zealand.

The English-language programme is one of several outcomes from the FTA that will expand opportunities for young Koreans to travel, work and study in New Zealand.

In May, 3,000 Working Holiday Scheme visas for the year were snapped up by Koreans aged between 18 and 30.  The visas allow for up to 12 months travelling, working, or studying in New Zealand.

The number of available visas was increased from 1,800 under the FTA.

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Korea-NZ free trade agreement