The­p­ower ofa­cademia

ChinAfrica - - Africa Report -

China’s role in the de­vel­op­ment of the African con­ti­nent via trade and in­fra­struc­ture is well doc­u­mented. Less is known, how­ever, about the aca­demic ex­changes be­tween in­sti­tu­tions of higher learn­ing and the ca­pac­ity they have in fur­ther strength­en­ing Africa-china re­la­tions. To this end, in late Au­gust, Pro­fes­sor Vice Chan­cel­lor and Prin­ci­pal of the Univer­sity of the Wit­wa­ter­srand (Wits Univer­sity), in Jo­han­nes­burg, South Africa, led a del­e­ga­tion of aca­demics to China to visit a num­ber of uni­ver­si­ties, in­clud­ing the Hong Kong Univer­sity of Science and Tech­nol­ogy, Pek­ing Univer­sity and Ts­inghua Univer­sity.habib is also the chair of Uni­ver­si­ties South Africa, an or­ga­ni­za­tion rep­re­sent­ing pub­lic uni­ver­si­ties in the coun­try. The vis­its were in aid of ex­plor­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties for re­search col­lab­o­ra­tion in en­gi­neer­ing, medicine and science and are be­lieved to be strongly aligned with both South African and Chi­nese na­tional pri­or­i­ties, in­clud­ing the Belt and Road Ini­tia­tive. spoke with Habib to get his views on aca­demic part­ner­ships and ex­changes, and what pur­pose they serve in for­ti­fy­ing the China-africa re­la­tion­ship. Edited ex­cerpts of his view fol­low:

Many African stu­dents study in Chi­nese uni­ver­si­ties ev­ery year

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