Joint Conference of Asian Confucius Institutes along the Belt and Road Held in Bangkok

[Source]    Confucius Institute Headquarters (Hanban) [Time]    2017-09-12 13:13:30 

On September 9th, 2017, the Joint Conference of Asian Confucius Institutes along the Belt and Road was held in Bangkok. More than 250 representatives of 77 Confucius Institutes from 30 Asian countries along the Belt and Road, some cooperative universities of China and China-funded companies in Thailand. Prince Panadda Diskul, Vice Minister of Education of Thailand, Wanvilai Promlakano, Deputy Governor of Bangkok, Linda Gainma, President of Bansomdejchaopraya Rajabhat University (BRU), Lv Jian, Chinese Ambassador to Thailand, Xia Jianhui, Deputy Chief Executive of Confucius Institute Headquarters and Deputy Director of Hanban, and Jing Hongyang, Director of the University Affairs Committee of Tianjin Normal University (TNU) attended and addressed the opening ceremony.

Linda Gainma, President of BRU delivering a speech

In her welcome remarks, Linda Gainma said that it is of historic significance for the representatives to discuss the “Belt and Road” initiative and the development planning of Confucius Institute at the conference. The Confucius Institute at Bangkok University has greatly promoted the level and popularity of the university and cultivated a large number of local Chinese teachers by helping the university start the Chinese major and carrying out joint cultivation program of Master of Teaching Chinese to Speakers of Other Languages, which is a concrete embodiment of the benefits that the “Belt and Road” initiative has brought to the people of all countries.

Wanvilai Promlakano, Deputy Governor of Bangkok delivering a speech

Wanvilai Promlakano pointed out that there has been increasing opportunities offered in Thailand to Chinese language talents. A large number of Bangkok students study in China under the Confucius Institute scholarship. Chinese language teachers in Bangkok are trained all year round at the Confucius Institute at Bangkok University. Cooperation between the Confucius Institute and the municipal government is a successful model of the Confucius Institute’s participation in the “Belt and Road” construction.

Prince Panadda Diskul, Vice Minister of Education of Thailand delivering a speech

On behalf of the Ministry of Education of Thailand, Panadda Diskul appreciated the contributions of the Confucius Institute to promoting China-Thailand educational exchanges over the years. He pointed out that, the institute has played a positive role in promoting amity between the two peoples. As a friendly neighbor, Thailand is a significant pivot to realize the “Belt and Road” initiative. It is believed that the Confucius Institute can create more opportunities to deepen China-Thailand practical cooperation in various fields. The Thai government is willing to provide strong support for the development of the Confucius Institute.

Jing Hongyang, Director of the University Affairs Committee of TNU delivering a speech

Jing Hongyang pointed out that, as the “Belt and Road” initiative is gaining more popularity, there is an increasingly strong demand in other countries for comprehensive professional talents with an understanding of Chinese, technology and culture as well as for local Chinese language teachers. Therefore, TNU has launched an initiative on the “alliance of universities on the cultivation of ‘Belt and Road’ local Chinese language teachers and ‘Chinese plus professional skills’ comprehensive talents” to carry out cross-border and inter-university joint talents training, so as to provide a strong guarantee for the increasing demand for talents along the “Belt and Road”.

Lv Jian, Chinese Ambassador to Thailand delivering a speech

Lv Jian said that, under the promotion of the Confucius Institute, there are now nearly one million students learning Chinese in Thailand. Chinese language education has entered systems of elementary, higher and vocational education, and Chinese has become one of the most important foreign languages in Thailand. It is hoped that the Confucius Institute could continue making contributions to “China-Thailand amity”.

Xia Jianhui, Deputy Chief Executive Director of Confucius Institute Headquarters and Deputy Director of Hanban delivering a speech

Xia Jianhui pointed out that the Confucius Institutes in Asia have promoted exchanges and cooperation between Chinese and foreign cooperative universalities in various fields and forms, and established a bridge for exchanges and cooperation between academic institutions, cultural organizations, social organizations as well as enterprises, wining gratifying achievements. At present, the Confucius Institutes are in a new stage for a “2.0 Version” which enhances quality, deepens connotation, adapts to local conditions and develops with their own characteristics. The Confucius Institutes and the “Belt and Road” initiative have a high degree of relevance. The Confucius Institutes have promoted amity among people as well as mutual learning, respect, inclusiveness and peaceful coexistence among different cultures through language and cultural exchanges. “Co-built, co-managed and shared” by both the Chinese and foreign sides, Confucius Institutes are a model of exploring an international cooperation mode and a pioneer of practicing the “Silk Road” spirit. To achieve common development, the key lies in cooperation. It is believed that running Confucius Institutes successfully by the Chinese and foreign sides will certainly contribute to world peace and development.

Belt and Road Export Forum

The Belt and Road Export Forum was held after the opening ceremony. Hu Biliang, Director of “Belt and Road” Institute of Beijing Normal University, Suchart Thada-Thamrongvech, Former Minister of Finance and Minister of Education of Thailand, Halil Afsarata, Director of Strategic Development Bureau of Prime Minister’s Office of Turkey, Zafar Mueen Nasir, President of Punjab University, Ru Махан Мел Хареков, President of South Kazakhstan National University, Issa Bastaki, President of the University of Dubai and other famous scholars attended the forum. The experts from different countries focused on practical achievements of the docking between the “Belt and Road” initiative and their respective national development strategies, made an in-depth analysis of the rare “win-win” development opportunities brought by the achievements to their countries, and spoke highly of the important role Confucius Institutes have played in it. The representatives attending the meeting responded warmly.

A group photo of the participants

The conference was sponsored by the Confucius Institute Headquarters (Hanban), and was organized by the Confucius Institute at BRU. During the two-day conference, the representatives conducted in-depth discussions on topics such as the “Belt and Road” initiative and the development of Confucius Institutes, the connotation building and development characteristic of Confucius Institutes, and the development of local teaching staff. An achievement exhibition on the Asian Confucius Institutes (Classrooms) along the “Belt and Road” was held at the same time.

As of now, 51 out of 64 countries along the “Belt and Road” have established 135 Confucius Institutes and 129 Confucius Classrooms, including 77 Confucius Institutes and 79 Confucius Classrooms in 30 Asian countries. In the first half of 2017, the Asian Confucius Institutes and Classrooms along the “Belt and Road” offered various Chinese courses for about two hundred thousand students in over 7,200 classes, and held over 1,800 cultural activities which attracted over seven hundred thousand participants.


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