Confucius Institute at University of Zimbabwe celebrates 15th anniversary

Vice Chancellor of University of Zimbabwe Paul Mapfumo
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HARARE, (Xinhua) — The Confucius Institute at the University of Zimbabwe marked the 15th anniversary on Friday, an event which also saw the signing of memoranda of understanding for teaching Chinese at schools in Zimbabwe.

Huang Minghai, economic and commercial counselor at the Chinese Embassy in Zimbabwe, said that students are advancing China-Zimbabwe cultural cooperation by learning Chinese.

“The young people studying in the Confucius Institute are exploring their dreams. But more importantly, they are obtaining knowledge and skills that are needed in this modern world,” Huang said in a speech.

With closer China-Zimbabwe relations, the students will get more job opportunities and realize their dreams either in Zimbabwe or in China, he said.

Over 16,000 students have learned Chinese at the Confucius Institute, which opened in 2007.

Vice Chancellor of University of Zimbabwe Paul Mapfumo said language plays an important role in advancing relations between the two countries.

“When our people are able to communicate effectively, they are able to explore areas of business, entrepreneurship, science, technology and innovation which are fundamental in the advancement of our modernization and industrialization agenda,” he said.

In his congratulatory remarks, Du Peng, vice president of Renmin University of China, commended the Confucius Institute for its role in facilitating cooperation between Zimbabwe and China.

“The institute is not only a platform for language learning and cultural exchanges, but also plays an important role in promoting personnel exchanges and academic cooperation on a larger scale, to a higher level and in more fields,” Du added.

Atipaishe Makwangudze, a high school student, said learning Chinese has been beneficial.

“So far I have been offered a scholarship to study in China for five years and I’m really grateful for it,” she s