90 top university students from Australia and the Asia Pacific region have been recognised for their outstanding work after being awarded the 2013 Prime Minister's Australia Award.


Forty undergraduate and postgraduate Australian students will receive scholarships to study, undertake research or take up a work placement across the region. Twenty students from Asia and 30 students from the Pacific will receive the same opportunity in Australia.


Prime Minister Julia Gillard said the awards were important in developing enduring education, research and professional links between Australia and the Asia-Pacific region, as well as promote leadership skills.


The students and researchers will have the chance to experience international study and work experience in countries across the region including Australia, India, Indonesia, China, Japan, Malaysia and Vietnam.


"The Asian Century presents a world of opportunities for our students and the Government is determined to make sure more Australians have the chance to benefit," Ms Gillard said.


"The next generation of Australian leaders will need to be increasingly Asian-literate and these are skills best learnt by experiencing Asia first-hand.


"Award recipients from the region will undertake international work placements and participate in leadership development workshops to enhance their ability to contribute to the development priorities of their home country."