5 December 2013

million+ welcomes Chancellor's commitment to expansion of higher education

Following the announcement in the Autumn Statement that an additional 30,000 student places will be funded in universities in 2014-15, the university think-tank million+ has welcomed the commitment by the Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, to the expansion of higher education. The Chancellor also announced that the cap on student numbers would be lifted for all universities and private providers in England in 2015.

In January 2013 million+ and London Economics published What’s the value of a UK degree? which highlighted the benefits to individuals, employers and the economy of creating more opportunities to study for a degree. The Chancellor’s plans for expansion rely on the sale of the student loan book but for the first time the Treasury has proposed that the proceeds of the sale will be reinvested in students and universities – a policy for which million+ has long campaigned.

Professor Michael Gunn, Chair of university think tank million+ said:

“I welcome the Chancellor’s recognition of the importance and value of higher education to individuals and the Government’s commitment to mass higher education through the funding of additional student numbers. The decision to reinvest future proceeds from the sale of the student loan book in higher education is important and one for which million+ has long made the case.

Universities and students will now want to know that this expansion is being funded on a sustainable long-term basis and that the means of paying for it really do add-up.”


Notes to Editors
1. For further information or to arrange an interview with Professor Michael Gunn please contact Victoria Robinson, Press and Communications Officer, million+ on 07527 336 795.
2. million+ is a leading university think-tank and more information can be found at: www.millionplus.ac.uk.
3. Read the million+ / London Economics report What’s the value of a UK degree?
4. To see a full summary of the Autumn statement 2013, click here.