Mid Wales

Aberystwyth University's Mauritius campus loses £1m

Aberystwyth University's Mauritius campus Image copyright Aberystwyth University
Image caption Aberystwyth University's Mauritius campus was built for 2,000 students

An overseas campus set up by Aberystwyth University lost more than £1m in just two years, figures have shown.

The Mauritius campus opened in autumn 2015, but only 40 students enrolled in its first two terms.

Its latest accounts show £658,000 was made from tuition fees during 2015-16 and 2016-17, against a deficit of £1,017,000.

The university has already announced the campus will close.

It will not enrol any new students from next month.

The Mauritius campus has been criticised by Mid and West Wales AM Simon Thomas and former Aberystwyth University vice-chancellor, Prof Derec Llwyd Morgan.

Mr Thomas previously said the "plug should be pulled" on the campus if it failed to attract more students, while Prof Morgan described the venture as "madness".

The campus was built for 2,000 students, but only 106 enrolled in its second year.

Aberystwyth University said it had decided "to focus its international activities on the development of partnerships with key overseas institutions" and, therefore, would not be recruiting further students to its law, business and computer sciences courses in Mauritius.

A spokesman said the university was committed to continue teaching all its registered students in Mauritius until they "successfully complete their studies".

"We look forward to holding our first graduation ceremonies in Mauritius in July," he said.

Image copyright Aberystwyth University
Image caption Aberystwyth University holds a 51% share of the campus

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