Budget deficit in Cyprus leads to meltdown of student grants

Cyprus

NICOSIA – Attempts from the Cypriot government to cut its budget deficit will lead to lower student grants. The European Students’ Union (ESU) is deeply concerned about the government decision to cut the social transfers by 10 per cent in order to save 200 million euro. ESU strongly supports the protests on 27 September from POFEN, representative body of Cypriot students, against this development.

Allan Päll, ESU’s Chairperson said: “ Cuts on student grants threatens the right to education for everyone because it takes away financial support from many students. Students are a vulnerable group in society who need support in their endeavors for studying.”

He added: “With this measure, the Cypriot government is clearly prioritising short-term gains and has not taken into account the dramatic effect this might have for the future of the island’s young people”. The country is bound to reach a budget deficit of 5.5 per cent of gross domestic product in 2011. Cyprus is now negotiating an emergency loan of 2.5 billion euro from Russia, in order to escape an international bail-out as recently happened to Portugal, Ireland and Greece.

The student protests organised by POFEN - one of ESU’s members- will take place on Tuesday 27 September outside the Ministry of Finance and the House of Parliament in Cyprus. Päll concluded: “The best way to address the economic crisis is investment in education, young people, citizens and competences.”  ESU is the umbrella organisation of 45 national unions of students from 38 European countries and represents around 11 million students at the European level.

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Published: 26 September 2011


For more information, please contact:
Allan Päll, ESU Chairperson: +32/479.591.499 or allan@esu-online.org or Marianne Slegers, ESU Communications Manager: +32/473.669.894 or marianne@esu-online.org