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Signing of FTA a great opportunity for education

Hon Chris Carter
Minister of Education
Minister for Ethnic Affairs

8 April 2008 Media Statement
Signing of FTA a great opportunity for education

New Zealand’s profile as a quality education provider has received a huge boost through the signing of the Free Trade Agreement, Education Minister Chris Carter says.

“At this moment in China, our country’s profile just couldn’t be higher, so this has been the perfect opportunity to make sure Chinese students see New Zealand as an education provider of first choice,” Chris Carter said.

Today the Minister will meet with Chinese Education Minister Zhou Ji, sign New Zealand-China bilateral agreements on recognition of qualifications and launch the New Zealand-China Doctoral Research Scholarship.

The scholarship encourages Chinese researchers to do some of their work in New Zealand universities and New Zealanders to do the same at China’s universities.

“We welcome Chinese postgraduate students who want to study in New Zealand and the new New Zealand curriculum requires all our Year 7 and 8 students to study a second language, significantly increasing opportunities to learn Mandarin,” Chris Carter said.

The recent launch of the “Asia Knowledge” website is designed to help New Zealand schools build Asian learning components into the curriculum.

The Minister also visited Peking University to award prizes for the “New Zealand Through My Eyes” blog competition, organised by the New Zealand Embassy in China and sponsored by Education New Zealand. Selected winners, along with journalists from Chinese media, will visit New Zealand and write about what they see for the Chinese public.

“Around 144,000 Chinese students studied overseas last year and we want as many of them as possible to choose New Zealand as their destination,” Chris Carter said.

The Minister’s visit to Beijing follows visits to Thailand, Viet Nam and Cambodia where he met with government and education officials to promote New Zealand’s international education sector.


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