Home Local News China making more scholarships available to Antiguans & Barbudans

China making more scholarships available to Antiguans & Barbudans

by Pointe Xpress
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The People’s Republic of China (PRC) is making available an additional twenty scholarships available to nationals of Antigua and Barbuda to pursue tertiary level studies in China.

Announcing the additional scholarships, Prime Minister Gaston Browne said this brings the number of available scholarships offered to ninety-two.

Presently, there are seventy-two nationals pursuing tertiary education at Chinese universities.

According to PM Browne, the PRC’s contributions to Antigua and Barbuda’s development are substantial.

In educational development, the PRC gifted the Five Islands campus which now houses the University of the West Indies to the government and people of Antigua and Barbuda. This gift became a critical element in strengthening Antigua and Barbuda’s case to become the home of the University of the West Indies’ fifth regional campus

“It gave us a competitive advantage against the other OECS states vying to get the campus set up in their respective territories. If we did not have that facility, we would not be celebrating UWI FIC today. In fact, there would have been no UWI FIC.

“Truth be told, there were at least two other OECS countries that were ahead of Antigua and Barbuda to get the next landed campus of the UWI. So, for this gift, we are eternally grateful,” PM Browne remarked on Tuesday at the opening of the Chinese embassy in Marble Hill.

Browne went on to say that the Five Islands facility has paved the way for UWI FIC to advance to the next level as, last week, Saudi Arabia approved a loan of US$80 million (EC$216 million) to expand the campus.

The prime minister said this injection of money will transform the university and the communities that surround it into world class university towns.

The PRC’s resident ambassador, Zhang Yanling, said since China began offering short-term training and government scholarships to Antiguans and Barbudans, many people have taken advantage of the opportunity to pursue advanced studies which has enabled them to make greater contributions to their country.

She noted too that the Sir Novelle Richards Academy has become the first school to teach Mandarin (Chinese).

This year, the Confucius Institute in Antigua and Barbuda also saw the graduation of its first Mandarin speaking students.

Yanling added that the school’s valedictorian was also the best Mandarin speaker in the graduating class this year.

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