Professor Derrick Armstrong, Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research and International and Mr Daniel Montilla Rubiales, Chargé d'affaires from Embassy of Spain to Fiji after their meeting.
The University of the South Pacific (USP) welcomed Mr Daniel Montilla Rubiales, Chargé d'affaires from the Embassy of Spain to Fiji during a courtesy visit to the Laucala Campus on 24 November, 2016.
He was met by Professor Derrick Armstrong, Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research, Innovation and International, who welcomed him warmly saying the University, appreciated the interest in possible collaboration with Spain.
Professor Armstrong explained the role of the University in the region, with particular emphasis on higher education, regional integration, research, innovation, internationalisation, and regional mandate on Information Communication Technology (ICT) and Human Resource Development (HRD).
“In its efforts to provide solutions to the global challenges being faced by its member countries, USP has positioned itself as a leader in research that is original, modern, and readily applicable to the real-world problems and challenges of its member countries,” he said.
Professor Armstrong said the University proactively engages and takes a leading role in participating in dialogue with its member countries to find solutions on major development challenges such as climate change; renewable energy; education; public administration; gender and other areas in the region.
He added there are a number of projects and areas the University is involved in with the European Union particularly in climate change and renewable energy and European Development Fund 11 (EDF11) programming.
Mr Rubiales said Spain’s international development cooperation policy expresses the Spanish people's solidarity towards developing countries, based on broad, nationwide political and social consensus.
He noted that the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID), which is currently present in 33 countries, was set up 25 years ago to help eradicate poverty and famine in the world and foster the active construction of peace.
Other issues discussed included the partnership and collaboration of USP and Spanish universities and the possibility of the introduction of the teaching of Spanish language at the University.
“Our Embassy only opened in September and I am very glad that we have been able to meet so that I can give feedback back home and see how we can develop areas of partnership that have been discussed,” Mr Rubiales noted.
Professor Armstrong said the Pacific is a prime location for research and partnership for development, noting that USP was the best example of regional cooperation, which could be a platform for collaboration with the region.
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