Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Labour's student loan policy backfiring

Nick Smith

Opposition Education Spokesperson

24 February 2000

Labour's student loan policy backfiring

Opposition Education Spokesperson Nick Smith today said Labour's pre-election pledge to reduce student debt had backfired given the huge 45% increase in student loan applications revealed by the Government yesterday.

"Labour and the Alliance have screamed blue murder for three years over the level of student debt. It was inevitable that their interest-free policy is now enticing students to get even more in debt. WINZ has forecast that over 45,000 more students will take out loans in the first term this year than was forecast under National's policy.

"Students would be crazy to say 'no' to free money. Some students are using the loan scheme to enable them to invest in interest bearing accounts. I am also hearing of many well-off parents who are now telling their children to take out loans rather than assisting them with their education costs.

"There is a very real issue around the total student loan debt of over $3.4 billion. National's approach of significantly changing the repayment system to speed up debt reduction and tightening up the borrowing criteria is a far more sensible approach. Borrowing last year dropped $100 million on the previous year. Labour's policy is just going to get more young people in debt," Mr Smith said.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Emission Statement: 'Consensus Reached' On Agriculture

Today the Government launched a consultation document, informed by the work of the Interim Climate Change Committee (ICCC), on how to bring agriculture into the emissions trading scheme, a key part of the Government’s plan to tackle climate change and reduce New Zealand’s emissions.

Agricultural emissions make up nearly half of New Zealand’s total emissions profile and are the largest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions in New Zealand. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On What’s Wrong With Wellington

For many Wellingtonians, it hasn’t been the normal hardships – the workings of central government and the lousy weather – that have recently pushed their tolerance into the red zone. It has been the inability of local government to maintain even the basics. More>>


$1m Compensation Paid: First Gun Ban Event In Christchurch

The Police Minister says the first ever firearms collection event in Christchurch over the weekend was a huge success. But Stuart Nash had concerns about whether the participation reflected the number of weapons in the region. More>>


The Kids: Youth Parliament 2019 Event Kicks Off

120 Youth MPs and 20 Youth Press Gallery members have gathered in Wellington to attend the two-day Youth Parliament event ... More>>

Friends Like These: Foreign Minister To Visit USA

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters will travel to Washington D.C. today for talks with senior members of the US Administration, and to attend the Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Aussie Banks’ Latest Fee Hike Excuse

When the Reserve Bank sought feedback on its plans to require the country’s major banks to raise their capital reserves then you might have expected the banks to whine and complain. And so they have. More>>


Sitting On Defence: Terms Of Reference For Defence Estate Review

“The 81,000 hectare Defence estate is at a crossroads; much of it is run down, and outdated,” says Ron Mark. “It needs to be improved in order to gain, train and retain our service people, now and into the future." More>>


Meng Foon: Retiring Gisborne Mayor To Be Race Relations Commissioner

Andrew Little: “He has an outstanding record as a relationship builder and walks comfortably in the pākehā world, the Māori world, the Chinese community and other communities making up New Zealand." More>>


NCEA: Students Granted Qualifications After Fees Scrapped

Almost 150,000 current and former students with unpaid NCEA fees have today been formally awarded their NCEA credits or qualifications. More>>




InfoPages News Channels