10 September 2018 • HOP, Bas Belleman
Students cross about higher interest
The Dutch National Students’ Association (ISO) and Dutch National Student Union (LSVb) are angry about the increase of the interest rate on student loans. “The government is plunging students further into debt.”
The proposal was contained in the coalition agreement and students were also angry at that time. However, the minister actually submitted her legislative proposal to the House of Representatives on Tuesday. This means that the interest rate on student loans will rise.
Deeper in debt
The chair of the Dutch National Student Union, Geertje Hulzebos, thinks that “the government is plunging students deeper into debt”. “We are calling on the government to stop this and we are demanding that they scratch this measure.” The Dutch National Student Association (ISO) also expressed its view. “Students are yet again being disproportionately hit in the wallet. It does no credit to the government to fill the state treasury with the precious money of an indebted generation”, said its president Tom van den Brink.
It involves a huge amount of money. The monthly repayment on an average loan of 21 thousand euros will rise from 70 euros to 82 euros. Over time, the measure should generate 226 million euros. The interest rate is set again every five years for people making repayments, and this will continue. In the past, the interest rate was based on the interest rate that the government itself paid for five-year loans. It will soon become the interest rate for 10-year loans, which is slightly higher. The interest rate on student loans is currently at zero percent.
Nothing will change for current students. The rules will apply for new students from 2020.