Tuesday 04 October 2022

Student debt doubles since grants were scrapped, 1.6 million owe money

Students clustered together while studying outdoors.

Photo: Depositphotos

The amount of money owed to the government by Dutch students has doubled to €25.7 billion in the six years since student grants were abolished, national statistics office CBS said on Thursday.

The average student now owes almost €16,000, a rise of €3,500 on 2015, the CBS said. However, among recent graduates who are now in their late 20s, the average debt is over €20,000.

Some 1.6 million students have loans to pay back.

The number of students owing more than €30,000 has also more than doubled to 300,000 since grants were scrapped, and 100,000 owe more than €50,000, the CBS said.

The government has agreed to bring back some form of student grants from the 2023 academic year. Prior to the abolition of grants, students who lived away from home were given €260 a month towards their upkeep and college fees.

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