Mr WHETSTONE (Chaffey) (14:55): My question is to the Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science. Does the state government support an international student levy? With your leave, sir, and that of the house, I will explain.
Mr WHETSTONE: International education is one of South Australia's leading export industries, contributing over $2 billion to our state's economy. Despite already paying significantly higher fees than domestic students, the Albanese Labor government is proposing a sovereign wealth fund tax on international students.
The Hon. S.E. CLOSE (Port Adelaide—Deputy Premier, Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science, Minister for Defence and Space Industries, Minister for Climate, Environment and Water) (14:55): I am grateful for the question. No, South Australia does not support an international student levy. As the member has rightly pointed out, it is in fact our number one export in South Australia to have international students here as well as having a number of other benefits, including keeping the CBD lively, with people working, but also the relationships that we form across other countries. Whether people then choose to stay here and work or whether they go back to their country, those connections are extraordinarily important as a trading state. The reports in the newspaper, however, are not sourced, and no federal government minister has made a statement that that is a policy position that they wish to adopt.