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Parliamentary questions
PDF 102kWORD 18k
21 September 2017
Question for written answer E-005877-17
to the Commission
Rule 130
Christel Schaldemose (S&D) , Ole Christensen (S&D) , Bendt Bendtsen (PPE)

 Subject:  Cross-border recovery of student debt
 Answer in writing 

The EU Court of Justice’s ruling in Case C-46/12 means that EU citizens can go to any EU Member State and receive education aid and a student loan during their studies if they are accorded the status of ‘worker’ because, while studying, they are also pursuing effective and genuine employment activities. Such employment activities are in principle to be of at least 10 weeks’ duration (C-413/01), 10-12 hours per week (C-139/85 and C-444/93).

The number of non-Danish EU citizens receiving education aid in Denmark has risen sharply since the ruling. At the same time, non-Danish EU citizens have defaulted on their Danish student loans to the tune of DKK 123 million. That money is owed to the Danish State, and yet the authorities are unable to recover it. This is because many foreign students leave Denmark once they have finished their studies, and because Directive 2010/24/EU does not oblige Member States to assist with the recovery of student debt.

The Danish State is therefore obliged to give non-Danish EU citizens student loans, but the EU rules do not ensure that the authorities are able to recover those loans afterwards. This situation is undermining Denmark’s well-functioning education system.

1. What is the Commission going to do to ensure that Member State authorities are given better opportunities to recover student debt across borders, and when will the Commission be taking that action?

2. Is the Commission going to amend Directive 2010/24/EU to the effect that Member States are also obliged to help each other recover student debt?

Original language of question: DA 
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