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Gory truths of separating Scotland from the rest of the UK becoming clear - Rennie

July 7, 2011 11:46 AM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie MSP has urged the Education Secretary to come clean on the costs to Scottish higher education if Scotland separates from the rest of the UK.

Michael Russell conceded yesterday that the Scottish Government will not be able to charge English, Irish and Welsh students up to £9000 a year, as planned, if Scotland separates from the rest of the UK.

Scottish Liberal Democrat research has revealed that Scottish universities would stand to lose over £173,808,000 million a year. The Scottish Government would not be able to charge English, Irish and Welsh students the proposed maximum of £9000 a year in fees as they would be classed as European Union students and, as such, entitled to a free education in Scotland.

Commenting Scottish Liberal Democrat Leader Willie Rennie said:

"Two weeks ago the SNP denied that there would be any black hole in higher education funding if Scotland separated from the rest of the UK.

"But now the Education Secretary has revealed some of the gory truths associated with the costs of separating Scotland from the rest of the UK.

"The SNP have now got to explain how they plan to plug this massive financial black hole in higher education funding in Scotland."

Notes

There were 19,312 full time, first degree students from rest of the UK studying in Scotland in 2009-10.