NDP plans to phase out student loan interest over seven years

The New Democrats have promised that, if elected, they will phase out federal student loan interest and introduce $250 million worth of grants for students.

The plan to phase out interest will unfold over seven years, and according to the NDP, save the average student $4,000.

Under the Canada Student Loans Program, loans are delivered by both the provinces, who provide 40 per cent of the loan, and the federal government, who provide 60 per cent of the loan. The NDP plan would only eliminate interest on the federal portion of the loan, meaning students would still pay some interest.

However, the NDP’s education plans also include working with the provinces and territories “to make post-secondary education more affordable, accessible and inclusive.”

“Only the NDP has a plan to address the affordability crisis in post-secondary education,” said Saskatoon West candidate Sheri Benson at the Wednesday morning announcement in Saskatoon.

“Everyone who holds a federal student loan will benefit from our plan and by 2019, interest payments on student loans will be cut in half.”

The plan also includes $250 million for “as many as 50,000 new grants” with “an emphasis on helping students who need it most.”