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New Zealand, China to enhance tripartite partnership between universities

06-18-2010 08:45 BJT

BEIJING, June 17 (Xinhua) -- New Zealand Education Minister Anne Tolley expressed Thursday her hope to further developing education relationship between China and New Zealand.

Tolley, on her first visit to China as Education Minister, led a large delegation including seven Vice Chancellors of New Zealand universities.

"We want to continue building on the education relationship between China and New Zealand," Tolley told Xinhua in an exclusive interview.

New Zealand and China education authorities agreed in 2005 to support tripartite relationships between New Zealand universities, elite Chinese universities and Chinese universities based in western provinces which are involved in a "three-brothers" research collaboration, high-level staff exchanges and PhD scholar exchanges.

One of the famous tripartite relationships was formed between New Zealand Massey University, Peking University and Xinjiang's Shihezi University. They were engaged in a Chinese government-funded project regarding a Chinese sheep breeding gene program.

Tolley said such projects had brought huge benefit to China and New Zealand both in the areas of academic research and economic growth. She said New Zealand is looking to establish, support and grow such kinds of tripartite relationships.

During this visit, a new tripartite agreement on food safety research was signed between New Zealand's Lincoln University, China's Zhejiang University and Guizhou University.

Tolley said New Zealand is looking to increase the number of students in New Zealand learning the Chinese language.

Principals of six New Zealand schools that lead in Mandarin teaching, were also on the trip.

"We have formed a group to work together to see how we can expand the Mandarin teaching through the New Zealand schools and system," she said, "This is something we need to put into place, and certainly the Confucius Institutes are going to be a large part of it."

Tolley said the third Confucius Institute will soon open at Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand.

 

Editor:Du Xiaodan |Source: Xinhua

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