Keeping students fees under control is one of the key aspects of the Labour Party's tertiary education policy released on Friday.
If elected as government on 26 November, the opposition party says it also would establish a scheme to fund scientists and keep academic talent in New Zealand.
Labour's tertiary education spokesperson David Shearer says the future prosperity of New Zealand is dependent on it having a well-educated workforce and the country cannot afford to keep seeing its best talent disappear overseas.
Mr Shearer says Labour would maintain university funding at the rate of inflation and keep student fees under control by retaining the fees maxima system at its current rate of 4%.
Labour says it would also would reinstate funding to post-doctoral fellowships for PhD graduates and establish a scheme to fund scientists to carry out world-leading research.
The party would also repeal recent law changes that makes student union membership voluntary and restore $13 million of adult and community education funding.