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Study shows why Kiwis need a Green-Labour Govt

13 September 2005

Loan study shows why Kiwis need a Green-Labour Govt

The Green Party says a survey showing Kiwis currently pay the highest student loan interest rates in the world illustrates why young New Zealanders would be better off with a Green-Labour Government.

The survey released by the Educational Policy Institute found New Zealand's student loan interest rate of seven percent is higher than in any other comparable OECD country.

"We've been drawing attention to the unreasonably high rate of interest on student loans for some time," Green Tertiary Education Spokesperson Nandor Tanczos says.

"We're pleased that Labour has announced policy to address this issue, and this international survey underlines why a Green-Labour victory on Saturday is so important to the future of this country.

"If part of Government, the Greens will ensure that Labour prioritises its interest-free student loan pledge and, in addition, pursue our own policy of tackling the key drivers of debt - high tertiary fees and the narrow access to allowances.

"On the other hand, the National Party is pledging to keep in place our highest-in-the-world student loan interest rates.

"National has criticised the interest-free student loan policy by claiming it will massively escalate student debt. This criticism demonstrates that, as with so many other areas of policy, National simply doesn't understand how the student loan system works and clearly assume that everyone thinks like a speculator."

ENDS

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