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Minister: Number of foreign students is unsustainable

International students claiming a generous Danish study grant yet again the focus of politician's attention

A high number of international students claiming a Danish grant (SU) could lead to a government crackdown, reports and

The amount spent on grants to students from other EU countries has ballooned to DKK 321 million, from only DKK 19 million in 2013 when the EU ruled that Denmark had to provide equal funding to students from other EU countries.

In the deal resulting from the EU ruling, foreign students working over 10 hours a week are allowed to claim SU, the highest student support in Europe, if not the world.
Inbuilt into the reform was a safety mechanism that ‘protections’ would be enacted if the total cost exceeded DKK 390 million.

Minister: Not the goal to educate other citizens

The Minister for Education Ulla Tørnæs (Liberal Party) is worried by new figures showing that costs are approaching that level.

“It was never the goal of the Danish education system to educate other country’s citizens,” he said.

The most common home countries for this type of student are Romania and Norway who come and take technical educations in English.

Social Liberals: No reason to panic

But the Social Liberals, who were part of crafting the deal, said there’s no reason to panic. Spokesman Ida Auken said: “There is a threshold built into the deal for when we need to address the problem. That hasn’t been crossed yet, so the government needs to stop panicking.”

“The same legislation also helps to attract foreign talent to Denmark,” says Ida Auken.

Read the article (in Danish) here.

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