Australia’s Deakin University to become the first foreign varsity to set up campus in India

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Australia’s Deakin University to become the first foreign varsity to set up campus in India Blog Image

What’s in today’s article?

  • Why in News?
  • Background
  • About the Norms for Foreign Universities to Set-up Campus in GIFT City
  • What is the Need for Allowing Foreign Universities to Set-up Campuses in India?
  • News Summary
  • GIFT City 


Why in News?

  • On February 21, the Seattle City Council became the first city in the United States of America (USA) to ban caste-based discrimination.



  • The Union Finance Minister, in her Budget 2022 speech, had said that world-class foreign universities and institutions would be permitted to offer courses in the GIFT City.
  • She also said that such institutions would be exempted from domestic regulations in order to facilitate the availability of high-end human resources for financial services and technology.
  • Later, in October 2022, the Government notified regulations allowing foreign universities to set up off-shore campuses at GIFT City.
  • These regulations were framed by the International Foreign Services Centres Authority (IFSCA).
  • Headquartered at GIFT City, IFSCA is a statutory body established in 2020 under the International Financial Services Centres Authority Act, 2019.
  • It has been established as a unified regulator with a holistic vision to promote ease of doing business in IFSC and provide a world class regulatory environment.
  • Also, in January 2023, the University Grants commission chief M Jagadesh Kumar had announced draft regulations for foreign universities setting up campuses in India.
  • The UGC rules will be applicable to all such potential projects, except those in GIFT City, where only the IFSCA guidelines will be applicable.


About the Norms for Foreign Universities to Set-up Campus in GIFT City

  • It allows an educational institution from the top 500 QS World Universities to visit GIFT City and commit to establishing suitable infrastructure and facilities to offer courses in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), etc.
  • It aims to address some of the barriers that foreign universities have faced in coming to India, such as fee and administrative control, reservation policy implementation and the requirement that they be a not-for-profit entity.
  • It also permits the parent entity to repatriate any profit without restriction.
  • The foreign entity's courses or programs must be identical to those offered by the parent entity in its home jurisdiction, and the same degree, diploma or certificate must be conferred.
  • The IFSCA would have the right to inspect foreign campuses set up in GIFT city.
  • If an institution withdraws or discontinues a programme it would have to provide an alternative to the affected students, including reallocation.


What is the Need for Allowing Foreign Universities to Set-up Campuses in India?

  • The UGC chief pointed out that in 2022 over 4.5 lakh Indian students went abroad to study, leading to outflow of estimated $28-30 billion.
  • Allowing foreign universities to set-up campuses in India will also ensure that all our students — there are around 40 million pursuing higher education — have access to global quality education.
  • The ideal of setting up foreign universities’ campuses in India is also mentioned in the National Education Policy 2020.


News Summary

  • Australia’s Deakin University is set to become the first foreign university to set up campus in India. The University will set up an independent campus in Gujarat’s GIFT City.
  • The Deakin University is ranked 266th in the QS World University Rankings and features among the top 50 young universities in the world.
  • The university is also placed in the 250- 300 band in the Times Higher Education World Rankings.
  • The campus at GIFT City is expected to start operations from next year. It plans to first admit students to postgraduate programmes.



  • Gujarat International Finance Tech-City (GIFT City) is a planned business district in the state of Gujarat.
  • The concept of GIFT City was formulated in 2007 and its planning was awarded to East China Architectural Design & Research Institute (ECADI), which is credited with the planning of much of modern-day Shanghai.
  • Features of GIFT City –
  • It is India's first operational greenfield smart city and International Financial Services Centre (IFSC).
  • It is a vertical city that will optimise the land area consumption for the development.
  • It is located on the banks of Sabarmati River, connecting business capital (Ahmedabad) and political capital (Gandhinagar) of Gujarat state.
  • It has a dedicated multi-services Special Economic Zone (SEZ) for international operations for various services sector players.



  • To develop a new format for globally benchmarked Integrated City
  • To propose a road map for fast-track development and implementation
  • To make the city scalable in each and every aspect for a distant future
  • To derive the city format from fast changing lifestyles and new technologies
  • To achieve an image of Global city, that keeps pace with modern technologies.


Q1) What is the role of University Grants Commission (UGC)?

UGC has been given the responsibility of providing funds and that of coordination, determination and maintenance of standards in institutions of higher education.

Q2) Who is responsible for Higher Education in India?

The Department of Higher Education, MoE, is responsible for the overall development of the basic infrastructure of Higher Education sector, both in terms of policy and planning.


Source: Australia’s Deakin University to be the first foreign varsity to set up campus in India