UK Minister for Universities and Science Visits XJTLU

LONDON, September 22, 2016

The United Kingdom Minister for Universities and Science visited Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University today, marking the first time a UK minister has visited the University. Jo Johnson MP, Minister of State for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation, visited XJTLU as part of an official visit to China, which focused on innovation and higher education collaboration between the UK and Jiangsu province.

He was joined on campus by a number of delegates from the UK as well as important Chinese guests and officials, including Xiaochang Ding, deputy director of the Jiangsu Province Department of Education.

In order to celebrate the collaborative relationship between the UK and Jiangsu province, Mr Johnson witnessed the signing of six new agreements to deepen collaboration in research, innovation and higher education.

These included a collaboration between XJTLU, the British Council, and financial services provider Gold Finance to introduce scholarships for British students to study television and film in China.

As part of the visit, Mr Johnson also addressed students and staff at a lecture during which he called XJTLU an “extraordinary achievement” and said those involved in its development could be “tremendously proud”.

His speech highlighted the UK’s commitment to international engagement through transnational education programmes with China: “We want to work with China to address the challenges in education, to develop globally aware citizens equipped with the skills and cultural understanding that is essential in today’s globalised economy,” he said.

He noted the high standard of the education on offer at XJTLU, reiterating to students that they would acquire “some of the most desirable qualifications available from any institution anywhere in the world” and that they were the future of UK-China partnerships.

“You are all ambassadors of the UK-China friendship and the bedrock of the strong relationship between our two nations and, for that, I thank you,” he said.

While at XJTLU’s newly-opened South Campus, Mr Johnson unveiled the University’s International Research Centre, which will serve as a hub for entrepreneurship, research commercialisation, and international technology transfer, driving economic activity in Suzhou and the surrounding region.