Canada thrives when youth have access to the education they need to achieve their full potential. That is why the Government of Canada continues to invest in young people to ensure that they have the financial supports they need to complete their studies and successfully transition from school to the workforce.
Today, the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Carla Qualtrough, announced the permanent elimination of interest for Canada Student Loans and Canada Apprentice Loans under the Canada Student Financial Assistance Program. This significant action will reduce the financial burden on young Canadians as they start their careers.
Starting April 1, 2023, this change will benefit more than 1.2 million post-secondary graduates in Canada each year. The elimination of interest will save an average student loan borrower $520 per year, based on current interest rates.
For current students, Budget 2023 proposes enhancements to financial assistance for the school year starting August 1, 2023. It proposes to: increase Canada Student Grants by 40%, to provide up to $4,200 for full-time students; raise the interest-free Canada Student Loan limit from $210 to $300 per week of study; and waive the requirement for mature students, aged 22 years or older, to undergo credit screening in order to qualify for federal student grants and loans for the first time. Taken together, these changes support Canada’s commitment to inclusive and equitable quality education and lifelong learning opportunities for all, to help achieve Sustainable Development Goal 4: Quality Education.
“Life has become more expensive for Canadians, including students and recent graduates. That is why our government has permanently eliminated interest on Canada Student Loans and Apprentice Loans. Combined with the measures introduced in Budget 2023 this week, we are helping students and new graduates finish their studies, keep more money in their pockets and successfully transition to the workforce.” – Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Carla Qualtrough.
- The permanent elimination of interest on Canada Student Loans and Canada Apprentice Loans was first announced in the 2022 Fall Economic Statement.
- This change has an estimated cost of $2.7 billion over five years and $556.3 million ongoing.
- Students will continue to be responsible to pay any interest that may have accrued on their loan before April 1, 2023.
- Interest accrual on Canada Student Loans and Canada Apprentice Loans was temporarily paused beginning in 2020 and becomes permanent April 1, 2023.
- Quebec, the Northwest Territories and Nunavut do not participate in the Canada Student Financial Assistance Program. They receive alternative payments from the Government of Canada to administer their own student financial assistance measures.
- This announcement supports the Government of Canada’s implementation of Goal 4: Quality Education of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which was adopted by the United Nations to help build stronger, safer and more inclusive communities that leave no one behind. Eliminating interest on Canada Student Loans and Canada Apprentice Loans helps to reduce the financial burden of post-secondary education, ensuring that more Canadians have access to inclusive and quality education.