22 September 2022 at 10:30 am

Education ties with China

New Zealand’s education relationship with China, which is one of our most important and wide-ranging, was further strengthened during a recent bilateral ministerial meeting, at a time when Covid-19 restrictions are continuing to have an impact. 

Education ties with China 1
People’s Republic of China Education Minister Huai Jinpeng and New Zealand’s Education Minister Chris Hipkins, with copies of the renewed Education Cooperation Arrangement.

People’s Republic of China Education Minister Huai Jinpeng and New Zealand’s Education Minister Chris Hipkins met virtually on 23 August 2022. This was their first meeting since Minister Huai took up his appointment in August last year.   

During the meeting, ministers and officials signed the renewal of the Education Cooperation Arrangement between the two Ministries of Education. Co-operation in higher education, vocational education as well as early childhood education were among the topics discussed. Both ministers expressed the importance they place upon our mutually beneficial education relationship and our people-to-people ties.  

Left to right: Lisa Futschek, GM International at ENZ, Grant McPherson, Chief Executive at ENZ, Education Minister Chris Hipkins, Andy Jackson, Deputy Secretary Policy at Ministry of Education, Shelley Robertson, GM International Education Policy at Ministry of Education, attending the meeting in Wellington.

This year New Zealand and China are celebrating 50 years of diplomatic relations, and people – Tangata – is one of the key themes for the celebrations. 

ENZ’s Director for Greater China, Miranda Herbert, say that the Covid-19 restrictions currently in place in China continue to affect people’s ability to move around or meet in person. 

“We are constantly looking for ways to continue engaging with key people in China,” she said.  

“Holding this meeting virtually was a way for us to maintain and build our government-to-government relationships, even though there has been a pause in mobility. 

“The discussion between ministers highlighted the strong foundation of the education relationship  and the continued collaboration across initiatives such as the Tripartite Partnership Programme, the Early Childhood Education Symposium and forums on vocational education and training.  

Looking ahead there will be further events and initiatives to continue to build people-to-people links in the education sector.  

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