VINCE CABLE has performed a remarkable volte-face over plans to replace university tuition fees with a graduate tax.
The business secretary – a long-time proponent of such a scheme – has written to Liberal Democrat members insisting “an additional tax on graduates” is not the way forward.
Cable said the tax would unfairly see some high earners pay more than the price of their course, while favouring foreign students who wouldn’t have to pay for their tuition if they left Britain.
Scrapping tuition fees would also cost the government billions in foregone revenue at a time when it is grappling with a huge budget deficit, Cable warned.
Lord Browne, the former BP chief, will today publish his report into university fees. He will recommend a big hike in upfront tuition fees, to up to £12,000 for some students.