New Confucius Institute opens in Miskolc

Monday, August 26, 2013

State Secretary for External Economic Relations and Foreign Affairs Péter Szijjártó signed an agreement in the Parliament building on Friday on the opening of a new Confucius Institute in Miskolc. The State Secretary emphasized: the institute has been established jointly by the University of Miskolc, the Beijing University of Chemical Technology and the Chinese Language Council. The institute will play a major economic role in the local economy of Miskolc and serve as a bridge between Chinese-Hungarian strategic cooperation.

Confucius Institutes play a major role in spreading Chinese language and culture worldwide. Thee-hundred and fifty such institutes operate around the world; currently, 5000 university applications are waiting to be assessed by the Beijing-based center.

In Hungary, the first Confucius Institute opened at Eötvös Lóránd University in December 2006; currently, it employs 30 native Chinese language teachers; the institute won the Chinese Language Council's certificate of excellence award three times. A second institute was opened in Szeged in October 2012; the Miskolc based institute will be the third of its kind in Hungary.

The state secretary pointed out that strategic cooperation with China is one of the pillars of Hungary’s eastern partnership policy.

The Rector of the University of Miskolc András Torma remarked that one of the main goals of Hungarian higher education is to provide graduates with the necessary skills including foreign language skills to be able to successfully compete on the labor market.

Wang Fang, Secretary of the Beijing University of Chemical Technology, expressed his gratitude to the Hungarian and Chinese governments for the support and emphasized that besides teaching language the institute could play a major role in scientific cooperation between the two countries as well.

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