Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Hon Julie Bishop MP, and Minister for Education and Training, Senator the Hon Simon Birmingham, today announced the successful applicants for grants under the 2017 New Colombo Plan mobility program.

More than 7,400 Australian undergraduate students will live, study and take up internships in countries throughout the Indo-Pacific region next year under the New Colombo Plan mobility program, bringing the total number of students funded over its first four years to more than 17,000.

Minister Bishop said the New Colombo Plan was designed to lift knowledge of the Indo-Pacific by supporting Australian undergraduate students to live, study and undertake internships in the region.

“The New Colombo Plan has proven to be transformative, providing life changing opportunities for Australia’s future leaders, with many participants reporting that the New Colombo Plan has given their academic and career aspirations a greater regional focus,” Minister Bishop said.

“Through these students, a new generation of Australians will gain an in-depth knowledge of our region along with professional and personal networks to drive Australia’s future prosperity.”

Minister Birmingham said mobility projects were open to Australian undergraduate students from any discipline, and range from short-term to semester-based study and internships. 

“The 2017 New Colombo Plan mobility program will support students from 40 Australian universities to study in 31 host locations across the Indo-Pacific region in fields as diverse as education, engineering, business and geology,” Minister Birmingham said.

“Expanding education links between Australia and the Indo-Pacific through these students is a key priority for the Turnbull Government and is an important part of transformative partnerships pillar of our National Strategy for International Education 2025.”

For more information on the New Colombo Plan, visit