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The Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China on First Visit to University of Malta
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The Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China, H.E. Cai Jinbiao, conducted an official visit to the University of Malta on Thursday 22 November 2012. During the meeting with the Rector, the Ambassador shared his belief that education was the element that featured most prominently in the historic relationship between Malta and China. The Ambassador and the Rector expressed their confidence that following the signature of the agreement for mutual recognition of qualifications between Malta and China, both countries will benefit from a wider movement of students and graduates. This will lead to more cultural understanding and stronger academic and economic ties. The Ambassador stated that Malta is definitely one of the best destinations for Chinese students and with the necessary promotion and support, Chinese students would certainly consider furthering their studies in Malta.

The Rector also briefed the Ambassador on a number of collaborative projects that are currently in the pipeline. These involve the University of Jiaotong, Fudan University and Shanghai Maritime University. Whilst continuously strengthening its relationship with Xiamen University, the University of Malta is also seeking to enhance its network of collaboration in China. The Ambassador called for the development of a strategic plan between Malta and China, replicating on the success that such concrete plans have had in China’s relations with the US and the EU. The strategy should focus on performing what was establised in official documents and agreements and maximizing on the potentials of both countries in jointly approaching projects in other areas of interest such as North Africa and the Middle East.

Seven students are currently reading Chinese for their BA programme. Twenty-one students are studying Chinese within the DegreePlus programme. Moreover, next week five other students will be receiving their Diploma in Chinese.  The Ambassador agreed that given the short span of time involved, the numbers are promising but more awareness needs to be created concerning the huge potential and importance the Chinese language has for fresh graduates as the number of Maltese speakers of Chinese is as yet very small.

A total of sixteen Chinese students is currently pursuing studies at the University of Malta at undergraduate and post-graduate level. The University currently also hosts four students from Xiamen University who are registered for a period of one semester or one full year of studies in various areas including Laws, Mathematics, Communications and Architecture.

During his visit to the University, the Ambassador also visited laboratories and research facilities in the Biomedical Sciences and Engineering. This was followed by a meeting with Chinese students currently pursuing studies at the University of Malta.

The Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China on First Visit to University of Malta
left to right: Dr Godfrey Grech, Mr Reno Calleja, Ambassador Cai Jinbiao, the Ambassador’s wife Mrs Wang Jianqun and Pro Rector Prof. Richard Muscat at the Biomedical Sciences Laboratory

The Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China on First Visit to University of Malta
Rector Prof. Juanito Camilleri greeting Ambassador Cai Jinbiao and Mrs Wang Jianqun

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