NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Kenya plans to set aside some 134 million U.S.
dollars to promote access to tertiary education in 2018, a
senior government official said on Thursday.
Amina Mohamed, the
Cabinet Secretary in the Ministry of Education, told a media
briefing in Nairobi that the funds will be used to subsidize
fees for approximately 294,000 university and vocational
“The funds are meant
to assist those who would ordinarily not afford higher education
so as to increase the skills levels in the country,” Mohamed
“The student soft
loans help to advance the national agenda of ensuring no Kenyan
misses out on education for want of financing,” she said during
the Higher Education Loans Board (HELB) Employer Engagement
HELB draws its
funding from the Government’s exchequer as well as loan
repayments from past beneficiaries.
Mohamed noted that
45 million dollars is expected to be recovered from
beneficiaries in 2018, up from 40 million dollars in the
The student loans
will be provided via the state-owned HELB that acts as a
revolving fund to finance higher education.
She noted that the
government has also partnered with the private sector to support
20,000 students at a cost of eight million dollars.
resources have helped in bridging the gap arising from
insufficient funding from the National Treasury,” he said.
In 2017, the
government sponsored 225,000 students to undertake various
higher education courses at a cost of 100 million dollars.
According to the
ministry of education, since 1974, 396,680 loan accounts worth
475 million dollars have matured for repayment; while 264,000
loanees holding 245 million dollars have not matured.
“Of the 396,680 loan
accounts, a total of 175,003 loanees have completed their loan
repayment valued at 167 million dollars,” the cabinet secretary
Mohamed said that
the government is currently exploring other resource
mobilization strategies to achieve 100 percent Universal Higher
Education Financing as currently the majority of students pay
for their own education needs.
She said that the
government mostly finances students in universities in Kenya as
well as the East African Community member states.
“However, this year
we hope to spend 20 million dollars to fund education for Kenyan
students in universities outside the East African region in
nations such as South Africa, China, United States, and European
nations,” she added.