¡¾Dedicated to 40th Anniversary of Reform and Opening up¡¿Striving for Belt and Road: Field Watchers Rooted in Africa

[Source]    Media Convergence News Center, JSBC [Time]    2018-07-04 09:12:25 


Jointly produced by the Publicity Department of CPC Jiangsu Provincial Committee, Jiangsu Broadcasting Corporation, the Development and Reform Commission of Jiangsu Province, as well as the Foreign Affairs Office of Jiangsu Province, ¡°Striving for Belt and Road¡±, the large-scale transnational news program filmed by the Media Convergence News Center of JSBC was officially broadcast on June 21st. Today, let us meet some field watchers who have been rooted in the African Highlands for decades. During this period, batches of scholars from Nanjing Agricultural University have been committed to bringing the best Chinese agricultural production technologies to the African people, and watering the flower of China-Africa friendship with their ingenuity, blooming their best years by the shore of the Indian Ocean.

Kenya, Nakuru

Liu Gaoqiong, who came to Kenya in November, 1997, had never thought that he would have been working here for more than twenty years.

In September, 2013, Li Yuan came to the Confucius Institute in Kenya, which now has become the world's first Confucius Institute featuring agricultural education.

According to Li Yuan, Director of the Confucius Institute at Egerton University in Kenya, the cooperation between Nanjing Agricultural University and Egerton University began in 1995. Since then, Nanjing Agricultural University has dispatched experts of nearly 100 person-times. Those greenhouses in the institute were common in China, but a completely new thing in Kenya.

Liu Gaoqiong is a professor of Nanjing Agricultural University. When he came to Kenya, managers and technical seniors at the farms were all Europeans, and the application of modern technologies in small-scale farms was very rare. Courses like greenhouse management and bio-technology, set up by Liu Gaoqiong and his colleagues later then, were not available in Kenya at the time.

When Liu Gaoqiong just arrived in Kenya, he brought two greenhouses. After then, he built a cooperation center on gardening between China and Kenya, planting some tomatoes. Even the President of Kenya came to visit the center and said ¡°The tomatoes grow so well. Our people could be lifted out of poverty if they use such advanced technology.¡± The President¡¯s words left Liu with a sense of mission.

There have been many plastic greenhouses in the countryside of Kenya which helped the ordinary people increase their income to hundreds of thousands of shillings every year equaling to tens of thousands of RMB. Liu remembered it was Premier Li Keqiang who decided to assist building a molecular biology laboratory when he visited Kenya last time.

Such lab needs a lot of highly advanced equipment which must be imported from China. While the Kenyan custom does not accept any digital materials, all need to be printed out. Therefore, the custom clearance, which takes only a week in China, dragged on a year in Kenya.

But the ¡°Kenya Time¡± does not mean laziness. People are encouraged to plan ahead and make full preparation. In this way, many difficulties can be solved.

Many people asked Liu why he can work in Kenya for so long. Liu said the reason is that he and his team want to provide the local people with technologies and talents required for their agriculture development, so as to help and better Africa.

Over the past 20 years and more, Nanjing Agricultural University has held 25 training courses, which have trained more than 2,000 agricultural science and technology backbones, and 41 masters and doctors in east African countries. Students from Nanjing Agricultural University are spread throughout Kenya.

Joshua Otieno Ogweno, Foreign Director of Confucius Institute at Egerton University in Kenya, said, ¡°Our agricultural training program grows from a small class into an African regional organization. All these achievements come from support of China¡¯s Jiangsu Province.¡±

Li Yuan proudly said that Egerton University is the second most prestigious public school in Kenya, where students are interested and active in learning Chinese. In addition, the school sends 15 to 20 students from Confucius Institutes to Nanjing Agricultural University for summer camp every year.

Yang Zhiguo, a Chinese teacher of the Confucius Institute at Egerton University in Kenya, said that there is a chance for Kenyan students to experience China in person. Boasting a long and splendid culture, China is a very modern and dynamic innovative country.

Ma Mengyang, a college student of the Confucius Institute at Egerton University in Kenya, said in Chinese, ¡°I didn't expect that learning Chinese can give me so many opportunities; I took part in the summer camp and Chinese bridge competition in Kenya.¡±

Talented students graduated from the school master both Chinese language and agricultural technology. The local government hopes to incorporate vocational and technical training in schools into their agricultural development plans.

Nanjing Agricultural University now has seven Chinese language teaching sites in Kenya, each of them with only one teacher available. They have adhered to fulfilling duties on their own for decades.

Chen Juanqiu, a Chinese teacher of the Confucius Institute at Egerton University in Kenya, teaches in the grassland alone, who often watches the sunrise and sunset by herself.

Zhou Zhenyan, a Chinese-teaching volunteer of Confucius Institute at Egerton University in Kenya, said that the hardware facilities in Kenya are a little bit deficient than those in China. For many years, experts and teachers came to help Kenya one after the other and bloomed best years here for their common wish to light up Africa¡¯s dream of revitalization with their personal efforts.

Liu Gaoqiong said that cooperation with Africa in the past two decades has made him understand that only through pragmatic cooperation and selfless dedication could the friendship between Chinese and African people be carried on.

Li Yuan believes that they have shouldered the mission entrusted by the two countries, so they should keep the mission in mind to communicate the Chinese language and culture and bring the latest and best agricultural technologies to this promising land.

At present, Jiangsu has set up 33 Confucius Institutes abroad. The exchange projects have covered from language and culture to various fields such as traditional Chinese medicine, commerce, tourism, agricultural technology.

"With wholehearted dedication, we are here only for the fragrance from equatorial highlands when holding up a handful of soil in a sudden breeze." Listen, this is the voice from Kenya-aid team of Nanjing Agricultural University.

(Story by Xuan Zegang, Yang Erxi and He Fei, Media Convergence News Center, JSBC)

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