Sonipat, India, Aug. 2 (CNA) The first Taiwan Education Center in India was inaugurated Monday to promote Chinese language learning, the latest step in a campaign to project Taiwan's soft power overseas.
The new facility was the eighth Taiwan Education Center to be established worldwide in a program being sponsored by the Ministry of Education and run by National Tsing Hua University (NTHU).
Located in Sonipat, Haryana Province, just north of New Delhi, the new center is a cooperative venture between NTHU and O.P. Jindal Global University of India (JGBS).
On Monday, a ceremony was held to inaugurate the new center, which is expected to open two Chinese language classes of 20 students each by the end of the year.
Wang Wei-chung, the dean of NTHU's Office of International Affairs (OIA), told CNA that the center has employed a certificated teacher and a local assistant so far and will use teaching materials provided by NTHU that all use traditional Chinese characters.
As an extension of the program, NTHU plans to invite students of JGBS and other Indian universities to Taiwan to learn more about teaching Chinese, Wang said.
Aside from language training, Wang believed the Taiwan Education Center would also play a critical role in promoting Taiwanese culture and educational cooperation between the two countries.
Raghar Ranganathan, a freshman at JGBS, said learning Chinese was now indispensable because interactions between Taiwan and India had grown much closer.
He believed that during the two-year courses he would have opportunities to attend seminars in Taiwan or China and felt that learning the language would be an asset to his future career.
Wang and NTHU OIA Vice Dean Hu Yu-chen, the head of JGBS C. Raj Kuma, representative of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Center (TECC) in New Delhi Ong Wen-chyi, and other TECC officials attended the center's dedication ceremony. (By Ho Horn-ru and Nell Shen) enditem/ls