International students contribute £429m to Yorkshire’s economy

£25 billion is generated for the UK on and off campus

International students generate £429 million in off-campus expenditure to the Yorkshire region, according to new research conducted for Universities UK.

The figures, collected by Oxford Economics, found that international students contributed £25.8 billion to the economy through tuition fees, accommodation, spending and visiting family in 2014-15.

Yorkshire and the Humber, home to both Sheffield and Sheffield Hallam Universities, benefitted from 3,594 jobs created by international student spending and £835 million in export earnings.

Off campus spending generated around £1 billion in tax revenue to the UK, which is about the equivalent of ‘the salaries of 31,700 nurses or 25,000 police officers’.


The study also highlights the impact international students make upon each region in England, with London seeing the largest amount of spending at £2.74 billion and the North East receiving the lowest at £256 million.

This data follows a BBC report in 2013, which estimated that international students were worth £120 million to the economy of Sheffield alone.

In 2013, Sheffield University launched the #WeAreInternational campaign, to welcome students coming to study in the UK and making a stance against any prejudice international students may face while studying.

Whilst the financial contribution is recognised as highly important, the campaign demonstrates international students integrate into the local community, take on volunteering opportunities, and boost cultural life.

The campaign is now supported by over 100 universities, the National Union of Students, and has a sister campaign in the US called #YouAreWelcomeHere.

You can read the full research from the study here.