A group of universities is calling for some or all of the £5 billion cost of tuition fees and maintenance loans to be funded by the private sector through sales of bonds, not by the taxpayer, as in Hungary. University Alliance, representing 22 universities including Oxford Brookes, Bournemouth, Plymouth and Nottingham Trent, said that companies should, in return, charge students higher interest on loans. Typical interest rates might rise to 4.5 or 5 per cent, from their current rate pegged to inflation. Students would not face higher monthly repayments but would repay loans over longer periods.
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