Wednesday 12 August 2020

Education minister withdraws plan to raise interest on student loans


The cabinet has abandoned plans to raise interest on student loans after opposition parties indicated the measure would be voted down in the new senate.

Education minister Ingrid van Engelshoven had proposed a law that would have changed the basis for calculating interest on loans from the five-year treasury rate to the 10-year rate, which is almost always higher.

The reform would have added around €12 a month to the cost of repaying the average student loan of €21,000 over 35 years.

The move was opposed not only by all opposition parties in the senate, but also the D66 group, which is in the coalition, and Anne-Wil Duthler, a former VVD senator now sitting as an independent.

Student associations also campaigned fiercely against the plan in recent months, lobbying senators and vowing to take legal action to uphold the International Treaty on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.

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