Not Only for Interest but for Future Development—Investment in Chinese, Investment for life

[Source]    People’s Daily Overseas Edition [Time]    2018-01-24 09:08:26 
 


Happy Rogers (first from left), the daughter of American financial tycoon Jim Rogers, has sparked heated discussion among netizens for her proficiency in Chinese.

Happy Rogers has sparked heated discussion among netizens recently for her fluency in Chinese language.

In his new book titled A Gift to My Children: A Father’s Lessons For Life And Investing, Rogers (senior) stated that learning Chinese is an investment for life and has been inspiring his two daughters to learn the language.

Investing for Future Development

“Chinese is an emerging language, and learning Chinese is considered a good investment,” said Antonella Sorace, Professor of Bilingualism Matters at the University of Edinburgh, UK.

“To help my daughters succeed in life and future investment activities, I’ve put them one step ahead of other children. Their Chinese tutor has been using Mandarin to communicate with them. And we moved to Asia so that they can enter Chinese schools,” Rogers mentioned in his book. For Rogers, learning Chinese is not just an interest, but an “investment” for the future development of his children.

The emergence and continuing craze for Chinese learning in the world cannot be separated from the rapid development of China and the promotion of China’s international status. In his book, Rogers explains his “foresighted” view. “The fundamental reason for people to learn Chinese is that China’s economic, political and cultural strengths are constantly improving and will play a crucial role in international affairs. The 21st century belongs to China, and the country is equivalent to a treasure house.”

Learning Business Chinese becomes a Trend

With the development of China, many investors have turned their attention to it. If they can speak Chinese, the efficiency in information reception and interpersonal communication will be greatly enhanced. Therefore, a lot of business leaders have joined the ranks of Chinese learning. Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook, for example, is adept in the language.

The trend of learning business Chinese has extended to all fields. According to data from the National Tourism Work Conference, the number of Chinese outbound tourists was 129 million in 2017, an increase of more than 45.8 million compared with 2012. For many years, China has maintained its position as the world’s largest source country for outbound tourists. The increase in the number of Chinese outbound tourists has led to the development of tourist destinations. In order to effectively communicate with Chinese tourists, tourism departments of some countries has put learning Chinese on their agenda. According to media reports, to attract more Chinese tourists during Turkey’s Year of Tourism in 2018, Turkish Union of Tourist Guides and the Turkey-China Culture Association recently conducted cooperation on Chinese training for tourist guides. More and more Turkish tour guides are returning to school to learn Chinese.

It is also reported that in Cambodia, local real estate agencies are also learning Chinese to communicate with Chinese customers. In the Iskandar district of Johor, Malaysia, an increasing number of non-Chinese workers are actively learning Chinese to enter the local Chinese enterprises, greatly encouraging non-Chinese residents to learn Chinese.

Learning Chinese to Foster Communication

According to data from Hanban, at present, there are 525 Confucius Institutes and 1113 Confucius Classrooms in 146 countries and regions, with 9.16 million various kinds of students. In addition, at present, more than 60 countries have incorporated Chinese teaching into their national education system by enacting regulations and decrees. The reason for the global craze boils down to the international community having increasingly high demand for the language with the promotion of China’s overall strength.

“Because my country, Nigeria, is getting closer and closer to China, I choose to learn Chinese,” Xiao Rui (pseudonym), an international student, told the author. After one-year study, he is able to communicate with people in fluent Chinese. Xiao Rui pays close attention to the relations between his home country and China. In recent years, cooperation between China and Nigeria in the fields including economy, infrastructure construction, agriculture, science and technology, culture and humanities has been promoted in an all-round way. Data shows that at present, Nigeria has two Confucius Institutes, one Confucius Classroom and 26 Chinese language teaching sites. The total number of students having Chinese courses is nearly 7,000.

Xiao Rui is currently studying for a Master degree in Chinese, and is preparing for the Chinese Proficiency Test (HSK) Level-6 examination. For future career planning, he said, “I want to return to Nigeria to become a Chinese teacher. If I have the opportunity to stay in China to continue my studies, I can learn other expertise besides learning Chinese.” In addition, he also hopes to contribute to the exchange and cooperation between Nigeria and China by learning Chinese.

(Story by Li Shuyi, People’s Daily Overseas Edition, January 19th, 2018, Page 9; Photos from: globalpeople.com.cn)

 
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