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Home > Ambassador Liu > Remarks > 2014
Ambassador Liu Xiaoming's Address at the Reception for the 10-Year Anniversary of the Nottingham University Ningbo China
(12 June 2014, Chinese Embassy)
2014/06/13

Minister Clarke,

Vice Chancellor Greenaway,

Professor Yang Fujia,

Deputy Mayor Zhang Minghua,

Distinguished Guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

It is a great pleasure for me to co-host this reception with Vice Chancellor Greenaway.

I want to warmly welcome all of you for joining us to celebrate the first decade of Nottingham University Ningbo China (UNNC).

I was told that the cedar and cherry trees planted in front of UNNC ten years ago have grown tall and lush. I wonder if this tree in the backdrop behind me is one of them?

In the past ten years, it is not only the trees on the UNNC campus that have grown.

The UNNC itself has grown into a success story.

In 2004, when it all started, it had a modest 254 undergraduates.

Today, over 6300 students from more than 40 countries and regions are studying at UNNC.

In its first 10 years, UNNC has grown from a budding project to a blossoming educational success.

It has done a superb job in bringing first class educational resources to China.

But it goes further.

It matches Chinese strengths with British competitiveness and this gives UNNC a one-of-a-kind global edge.

President Xi Jinping was working in Zhejiang when UNNC was established 10 years ago. He attended the launch ceremony and spoke these words:

"UNNC has built a new model for Chinese education to engage the world."

Now 10 years later, I believe we can tell President Xi with confidence that:

THIS ‘NEW MODEL’ HAS WORKED WELL!

UNNC graduates are making a growing impact in the world.

· Over 12,000 of them have graduated to date

· There are 6 cohorts of undergraduates.

· 9 cohorts of postgraduates, and this includes 1 PhD cohort.

These UNNC alumni are writing their own success stories across the academic and business spectrum in China, in Britain and beyond. Some are already leaders in their own fields of choice.

In the past ten years, China-UK relations have grown too. The two countries established their comprehensive strategic partnership the same year when the UNNC opened its doors.

Among this partnership’s many achievements:

· China and UK have built an effective array of dialogue mechanisms at various levels and in various fields.

· Bilateral trade has surged from less than $20 billion to over $70 billion.

· The UK is now China's second largest trading partner in the EU and a most popular investment destination.

· Chinese studying in the UK are the biggest overseas students community in Britain.

· Compared with 10 years ago, we have more Confucius Institutes in the UK than any other country in Europe.

· There is also a growing number of research centres with a China focus.

· And UNNC's New China Building is a microcosm of the larger landscape of China-UK relations.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

In China we say:

“It takes ten years to grow trees but one hundred years to rear the people.”

This saying reflects how education has always been, and will forever be, a long-term commitment.

The UNNC has done a magnificent job on both growing trees and rearing people in its first decade.

This has been achieved through an innovative, cooperative and open mindset. Also contributing is an enabling environment of good China-UK relations.

I wish in its next decade, UNNC can build on what it has achieved and continue to serve as a beacon of higher education cooperation between our two countries.

I wish to see more UNNC contribution as the second decade of China-UK comprehensive strategic partnership unfolds.

Last, but not least, I wish UNNC every possible success!

Thank you!

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