The Gold Coast wants to be renamed from a metropolitan to a regional area so it can boost the number of international students and skilled migrants.
Boasting gleaming high rises along beautiful beaches, the Gold Coast does not fit in with traditional images of regional Australia.
But a consortium of Gold Coast education providers is arguing the statistics paint a different picture.
Study Gold Coast is lobbying the federal government to change its classification to regional in an attempt to boost the number of international students and skilled migrants settling in the south east Queensland city.
Without a change, the Gold Coast won’t benefit from new visas and incentives to be introduced next month as part of the government’s push to ease city congestion while encouraging migrants and international students to go regional.
Study Gold Coast chief executive Alfred Slogrove say the city only attracted four per cent of the international student market, compared to Melbourne and Sydney which are home to about 85 per cent of international students.
The Queensland city's campaign highlights the difficulties in drawing boundaries as the government attempts to replace four separate different definitions with one for all skilled visas.