Even if there is a genuine problem, given the propensity, even willingness, of graduates from Slovakia or Poland to come to the UK, does it mean that there has to be any change in the UK-s overall competitiveness? The fact is that the British education system, though not quite such a bastion of Spanish practices and corruption as the United States, is still failing to deliver the right mixture of skills at the right price. It is quite clear that funding in certain sectors needs to be increased, but every time Universities get increases in funding, they tend to distribute it to the cheaper subjects- an awful lot of gender theory in theatre arts and not enough chemistry. Yet to argue with the Universities is to threaten their cherished "academic freedom"- a freedom that gives equal validity to queer studies and physics. If we are not producing engineers, at least the Slovaks are, and we can hire them.
In fact, I am clearly being over flippant- but unless or until either graduates are asked to repay the cost of their education, whether through direct graduate taxation, or some increment of income tax, or- better still- unless the Universities become genuinely independent of state control: especially in the way that they can charge fees, then University places will be rationed by scarcity and not by price.
It ain't pretty, but the choice really is that simple: Ration by price, or ration by scarcity.