CASTRIES- More affordable financing options will soon be available for students in Saint Lucia to pursue tertiary education following the approval of a USD3.7 million (mn) loan to the Government from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB).
The allocation will finance a line of credit for the Saint Lucia Development Bank (SLDB) to provide student loans at interest rates below current market averages. At least 5% of the available amount will be allotted to a Special Student Loan Scheme for individuals from low-income households and other vulnerable groups.
“Saint Lucia has numerous initiatives to substantially increase enrollment in post-secondary education and training and CDB is boosting these efforts by making resources available at attractive and affordable rates because given the cost of tertiary education, loan financing is the only option for some students,” the Bank’s Director of Projects, Mr. Daniel Best explained.
“At every level, the CDB understands that an adequately trained workforce is integral to socio-economic development and resilience, and we therefore support initiatives that increase access to tertiary education, especially for the financially disadvantaged,” he added.
The Bank has also approved a USD250,000 grant for an institutional strengthening program at the SLDB. The intervention will increase the strategic leadership, credit management, and customer service capacity of the organization.
“CDB’s investment of almost USD 4 million will enable the Saint Lucia Development Bank to fulfil its mandate, and it will support the Government of Saint Lucia in promoting and providing equitable access to tertiary level education. In fulfilling these objectives, we are continuing to facilitate socio-economic development,” Mr. Best said.