§ Mr. Bermingham
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment when the Education (Student Loans) Act 1998 will come into force; when he expects to make regulations; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Dr. Howells
Sections 1, 4, 5, 6(1) and 7 came into force on Royal Assent on 27 January 1998. Sections 2, 3, and 6(2) and the Schedule to the Act will come into force on 1 March 1998. My right hon. Friends the Secretaries of State for Education and Employment and for Scotland laid the Education (Student Loans) Regulations 1998 before the House of Friday 6 February.
The Regulations protect borrowers and debt purchasers by fixing the key terms of all loans taken out under the Education (Student Loans) Act 1990 both before and after 1 March 1998. The Regulations also provide for new repayment terms for disabled borrowers. These terms were formerly exercised at the discretion of the loans administrator.