There were 38,882 Vietnamese students in Japan as of May last year, an increase of 47.1 percent from the year before, Vietnam News Agency reported Wednesday, citing figures released by a Japanese educational organization.
It was higher than the 29,000 studying in the US, which had been Vietnamese students' top destination until March, according to an official at the Vietnamese embassy in Tokyo.
Vietnam is now Japan's second biggest source of students after China, which had 94,111 students, a number that remained unchanged since 2014.
As more and more Japanese businesses are entering Vietnam, Vietnamese interest in Japan is increasing accordingly, a Japanese educational official told the news agency.
The increased interest is also reflected in the fact that several elementary schools in Vietnam have started teaching Japanese, according to the official.
More than 110,000 Vietnamese students study in 47 countries around the world, spending an estimated US$3 billion a year, according to figures released at the end of last year by an education and training working group of the Vietnam Business Forum.