Universities Australia has labeled the Federal Government’s response to Dr Jane Lomax-Smith’s Base Funding Review Report as a ‘disappointing dismissal’ of the findings.

"Today's response disappointingly includes no commitment to increase investment in universities. This is despite the review's finding that increased funding is needed ‘to maximise the sector's potential to contribute to national productivity and economic growth,' said Belinda Robinson, Chief Executive of Universities Australia.

"Since the release of the report in late 2011, when its author said 'the time is right'for university funding reform, the sector has watched as a further $1 billion has been stripped from university research programs.

Ms Robinson expressed her disappointment with the response, saying that it was counter-intuitive of the government to be so dismissive while promoting an agenda of innovation, research and education.

"Our universities drive the skills and innovation needed to lift Australia's future competitiveness and to diversify the economy. Put simply, building our higher education system boosts our national productivity and prosperity,” Ms Robinson said.

"As China and other Asian nations escalate their investment in university education and research, we are facing a disturbing situation where the level of investment is falling behind."