The university students are facing high rental prices where expensiveness is crushing in households these days. The increase in rents affects the cost of living for students.
What is the situation of the students in one of the areas of the island where the cost of living has skyrocketed in recent years?
We discussed the issue with Viktor Christofides President of Proodeftiki K.F. (Progressive Student Movement) of CUT (Cyprus University of Technology) and member of the Board of Directors of the Student Union of CUT, in an exclusive interview on Voice International.
He stated that the increase in rents affects the cost of living for students, making living in Limassol unbearable, thus making the housing issue the biggest problem.
He said that Proodeftiki and the authorities of CUT are taking measures to address the housing crisis, while the government remains inactive.
Question:We could say that it is not an easy time to be a student. How are students responding today?
Christofides: In the general context, the increase in prices, inflation and the increase in rents, electricity and fuel, objectively, causes various issues for students as well. The cost of living is rising, while at the same time the support from the state, through allowances, remains at the levels that existed before, or even less.
For example, in the last ten years 24 million euros have been cut from the state student grant. So, it can
be seen that neither the previous government prioritized the needs of students nor the current
government. Since in the presentation of the budget, there is no mention for any increase in funds to support the students.
Question: What are the main issues that concern a student in Limassol?
Christofides: In Limassol housing is the main issue. It is the area where the rent increases were first seen. The increase on the rents have reached outrageous levels. For example, a studio, that last year was 500 Euros. Thus it has increased to 800 Euros ! Here is seen a huge increase in the already inflated prices. Also, another issue
arises in Limassol, due to the companies that come from abroad, which also bring their workers and rent apartments costing up to 2000 Euros, raising the prices in the market. At the same time, Limassol is
probably the most expensive city in terms of necessities and fuel, affecting the students and living
conditions. It is worth mentioning that many students are forced to come and go by bus from their
provinces and not rent or choose not to study in public universities due to the cost of rent and prefer to
study in private universities or even abroad.