Chinese Language to be Taught in Egyptian Schools as Optional Foreign Language

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Source: Quartz

According to an official press statement released by Egypt’s Ministry of International Cooperation on Monday 7 September, Chinese language will be taught in preparatory and secondary schools as an optional foreign language subject.

The Minister of International Cooperation Rania Al-Mashat witnessed the signing of an understanding memorandum between the Egyptian Ministry of Education and Confucius Institute in China, which will last for six years “and is perpetually renewed”.

A specialized center in teaching Chinese language will be launched in Egypt, as Al-Mashat said, and will have Chinese language experts teaching students, as well as developing a Chinese curriculum to be taught in schools.

This comes in light of the collaboration between Egypt and China through the Global Partnerships for Effective Development platform to support Egypt’s Vision 2030 and to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

“The Global Partnership for Effective Development Co-operation is a multi-stakeholder platform to advance the effectiveness of development efforts by all actors, to deliver results that are long-lasting and contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),” according to the United Nations.

Al-Mashat said that this collaboration will help achieve the fourth goal for quality education, according to the SDGs, which ensures that Egyptian learners acquire additional skills needed to enhance their job opportunities and widen their horizons.

“This cooperation portfolio with China amounts to 1,835 billion dollars, which includes financing in transport and housing sectors, and around 335 million non-refundable grants in higher education, scientific research, technical education, and space technology,” the statement reads.

Additionally, cooperation between the two countries amounts to around US$20 million, which includes projects as Egyptian-Chinese Friendship School in 6th of October City and the Kafr Mosleha Primary School in Menoufia Governorate, as well as a Chinese grant to the Ministry of Education to implement a project to develop the online learning system through the Chinese company ZTE.

Collaboration between Egypt and China does not only come in form of educational reforms, they also cooperated to combat the pandemic, where Egypt’s President Sisi launched an initiative to send 10 tons of medical aid and preventive supplies to China in February 2020.

From the Chinese side, they also coordinated for medical cooperation and exchange of experience, as well as the donation of three shipments of protective supplies to the Ministry of Health during April and May 2020.