The measure was announced in the coalition agreement and is regarded as a form of compensation for the abolition of student grants in 2015. By slashing tuition fees in half, the Cabinet hopes to reduce financial barriers for students from low-income families.


The Council of Ministers has just approved the bill, which will be submitted to the Council of State as a matter of urgency. It is expected to be submitted to the Lower House by March. The Minister for Education, Ingrid van Engelshoven, “hopes that [prospective] students will be able to take the proposed fee reduction into consideration when they decide on whether to get a degree or not, preferably before they even enrol.”

Fees will also be halved for first-year students attending university colleges, which tend to charge higher tuition fees, and for part-time students getting degrees at the Open University.