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Kicking off the Erasmus+ Master Loan Guarantee Scheme

As from this year, Bachelor's graduates will be able to benefit from special loans at advantageous conditions in order to study abroad for a full Master's degree. The initiative Erasmus+ Master Loans Guarantee Scheme, which is part of the broader Erasmus+ package, is initiated by the European Commission in cooperation with the European Investment Fund (EIF) and it is expected to provide a total amount of EUR 3 billion in loans benefitting up to 200 000 students by 2020. Students will be able to apply for loans later this year, through the participating banks and student loan agencies - after they will be selected by EIF following the call for expression of interest launched on 13 February.

The aim of the Erasmus+ Master Loan Guarantee Facility is to incentive international degree mobility within the Erasmus+ area by increasing access to finance.  The new Loan facility will enable students, regardless of their social background, to take a Master's Degree in another Erasmus+ programme country, namely: EU Member States, candidate countries (Iceland, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkey), Liechtenstein and Norway. Loans will have an amount up to EUR 12 000 for a one-year Master’s Degree course or EUR 18 000 for a 2 year Master's programme and condition for eligibility is that the Master’s is taken in a EU/Erasmus+ country different from where the student obtained his/her Bachelor's degree and different from the residence country. The Erasmus+ Master Loan Guarantee Scheme builds up on the successful experience of the portable state loans, that have significantly supported international mobility in Europe- as a previous ACA study pointed out (see ACA Newsletter ‘Education Europe’, Edition February 2014).