The federal government wants to attract more Chinese students to Canadian community colleges, technical institutes and polytechnics to add to the 50,000 already studying here.

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Canada already has 50,000 students from China and a new program is intended to attract more. ((iStock))

Immigration minister Jason Kenney says the government hopes to attract more students from China to Canadian colleges through a new Student Partners Program.

The program aims to expedite student visa applications for students applying from participating countries and colleges. In order to have their visa application processed under the program, students must submit certain documentation and allow colleges to report on their attendance at classes.

"International students bring with them new ideas and experiences and contribute both financially and culturally to the communities and institutions where they study," Kenney said in a news release.

There are currently more than 200,000 international students studying in Canada, contributing $6.5 billion to the Canadian economy.

The China program is based on a similar one introduced last year for India. It brought an additional 8,000 students from India to study in Canada, increasing the total number of Indian students to 19,000.

'Thousands from China will … benefit from the program.'—Jason Kenney, immigration minister

"The Student Partners Program has already helped to welcome thousands of students from India," Kenny said.

"Thousands from China will also benefit from the program. And when they've finished their studies, these graduates may decide to remain in Canada and may apply to immigrate under the Canadian Experience Class," he said.

The Canadian Experience Class is a special designation under which temporary foreign workers and foreign students who graduated in Canada can apply for permanent resident status.