Extra funding may be sought from the Legislative Council for universities and colleges. The Government's cancellation of increases in tuition fees for students for 1998-99 is expected to cut revenue by about $130 million. Secretary for Manpower and Education, Joseph Wong Wing-ping, said the Government had asked the University Grants Committee to discuss with colleges whether the drop in tuition fees could be absorbed through savings in other areas. Mr Wong said $130 million was only one per cent of the total yearly funding. The Government would ensure the institutions' education and research standards would not be compromised by a smaller budget. 'Everybody is facing economic hardship at the moment. I think it is only reasonable for us to ask the committee to see if it can meet the shortfall through savings before asking for extra money,' he said. But legislator Yeung Sum asked why the Government did not first ask the institutions to see whether they could meet the shortfall. He criticised the administration for presenting it as a fait accompli to the institutions.