Wipe all interest charged on non-resident NZ student loans
Kiwi Refugees – there are tens of thousands of us, perhaps hundreds of thousands, forced into a life of exile from our homeland by the actions of our own government.
We are a generation of young New Zealanders who have attended university, received degrees and moved overseas – but alas are fated never to return, due to mounting debt through accrued loan interest, a lack of accessible repayment information, heavy international transfer fees, and now the rumoured threat of asset seizure or jail time if we return.
There is no doubt, we are the guinea pig generation - caught between one generation who are now reaping the benefits of their free education, and another who bask in interest free loans.
The majority of us are productive citizens, some of us are doctors, lawyers, teachers – many of us have gone on to further education and all of us have accumulated valuable experience while overseas, whilst back in the homeland all we have accumulated is a horrendously crippling debt. It ridiculous to think of the money that the New Zealand government is spending trying to entice immigrants to ease the skills shortage, when there are so many skilled New Zealanders living in student loan-induced exile overseas. Surely it would be more beneficial if the government developed a compromise regarding the interest charged on non-resident student loans, thus working to turn the tide of the ever-growing ‘brain drain’.
The New Zealand government has done nothing but show the ‘kiwi refugees’ of ‘the guinea pig’ generation disdain, which is causing a great amount of aggravation amongst the ex-pats. It doesn’t take much more than a quick internet search and a browse through the numerous forums to discover that, although we are scattered across the globe, (making any attempt at presenting a united voice almost impossible) we are unified in the fact that the vast majority of us will never return and, just as the government has turned their back on our plight – we will do the same – openly disowning our country of birth.