In need of a career boost? Ministers launch new grants to retrain


The government is planning to scrap the tax break on the cost of work-related training courses and replace them with grants of up to €2,000 a year to allow people to further develop their career prospects.

The social affairs and education ministry hope up to 200,000 people a year will take advantage of the new grant system. People will be able to use the cash to partly fund diplomas which will boost their skills or make them more employable.

The current system, based on tax breaks, is rarely used by people who work on temporary or flexible contracts, or who are in professions where the jobs market is shrinking, such as sales and administration, ministers say.

‘It is important that people think about the future of their jobs and that they take action,’ social affairs minister Wouter Koolmees said. ‘This is key, not only to the jobs market. But it is also beneficial personally to learn new skills.’

The new grant system – known as as a Stap budget – was included in the coalition agreement and slated to come into effect in January 2020. However, the start date has been delayed and the system of tax breaks will remain next year, the AD said.

The grants will be applied for online and the money paid directly to the training institute, to stop potential fraud.

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