Professor Rajesh Chandra Vice-Chancellor and President of USP delivering his address during the celebration.
The University of the South Pacific’s (USP) Confucius Institute (CI) celebrated its 5th anniversary and the launch of the CI-USP Association at the Laucala Campus on 12 October, 2017.
Professor Rajesh Chandra Vice-Chancellor and President of USP said the Confucius Institute at USP began operations at the main Laucala Campus in Suva in 2012.
The decision to establish the CI-USP he said, was made by the 71st USP Council held on 2-3 November 2010.
Ms REN Chunxia, Director of International Office, Beijing University of Posts & Telecommunications (BUPT) and Professor Rajesh Chandra Vice-Chancellor and President of USP at the celebration of CI-USP's 5th anniversary.
“In making this decision, USP Council recognised that the ability to communicate effectively in Chinese together with an understanding of the Chinese culture, is crucial for Pacific Island people in a globalised world where China is a major player in the economic and political arena,” he said.
He noted that the Agreement for the Establishment of the Confucius Institute was signed between the Confucius Institute Headquarters of China/Hanban and the USP on 15 December 2010 while the Implementation Agreement for the Development of the Confucius Institute was signed on 22 February 2011 between the USP and BUPT.
With the approval of Hanban, BUPT and USP formally reached an agreement on 14 April 2011 to jointly build the Confucius Institute at USP, he said.
He noted that the vision of the CI at USP is to promote multiculturalism and contribute to a harmonious world, through enhancing the understanding of the Chinese language and culture in the Pacific.
Professor Chandra stated that China’s impact and level of engagement in the Pacific has been profound and is increasing at a very rapid pace.
In this context, he said, USP’s Confucius Institute is playing a critical role to deepen the understanding and relationships between the peoples of the South Pacific and China, and to integrate our region into the global economy in which China plays a very prominent role as the second largest economy in the world.
Professor Chandra acknowledged the support of Hanban, the Chinese Embassies in Fiji, Vanuatu and New Zealand Advisory Committees and staff members of the CI-USP in Suva, Lautoka, Emalus Campus and the Cook Islands Campus for their hard work and commitment.
“Dr Akanisi Kedrayate, Dean of the Faculty of Arts, Law and Education (FALE) has been a strong advocate and facilitator for CI-USP and I wish to acknowledge her interest and support,” he added.
Ms REN Chunxia, Director of International Office, Beijing University of Posts & Telecommunications (BUPT), on behalf of Professor Qiao Jianyong, President, BUPT congratulated CI-USP saying that since its inauguration CI-USP has gone through an extraordinary five years.
“Under the support and great kindness of the leaders of the two countries, the Confucius Institute Headquarters, the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Fiji and the sincere cooperation of the directors and teachers of CI-USP, it has developed fruitfully in Chinese teaching and cultural exchanges,” she said.
“I would like to take this opportunity to express my sincere thanks to all those who have contributed to the CI-USP,” she remarked.
She added that that CI-USP will play a more significant role in increasing the understanding and friendship between Chinese people and people from the South Pacific Islands.
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