Chinese colleges signed strategic agreements with counterparts in Southeast Asian countries to train skilled railway transportation talent for ASEAN member countries.
The agreements, signed in Guizhou province on Aug 2, included Chinese universities at various levels－Beijing Jiaotong University and Guiyang Vocational and Technical College, for example－to jointly train international students in two-year college programs and four-year bachelor’s programs.
As China has added contracts with ASEAN countries to build new railways, the need for technicians skilled in railway construction, operations and maintenance has grown.
Under the agreements, faculty members and students will be able to visit each other and exchange their experiences and programs.
It is the latest development in relations between Chinese schools and their Association of Southeast Asian Nations counterparts, after a deal on Aug 1 at China-ASEAN Education Cooperation Week established a railway transportation training league.
By Aug 2, 13 Chinese railway enterprises, including Chinese CRRC Corp and China Railway Group, 36 Chinese universities and colleges specializing in the railway industry and about 20 colleges from Southeast Asia, had joined the league, including Siam University in Thailand and the University of Surabaya in Indonesia.
“The league can enhance communication between colleges from China and ASEAN countries, increasing the number of international students and improving communication and cooperation between schools and enterprises,” said Wang Hong, director of the Railway Transportation Commission of the China Vocational Education Association.
Liu Luming, vice-president of Guiyang Vocational and Technical College, said the school has 36 students from a province in Laos enrolled in courses related to the railway industry.
Laos and China have agreed to build a rail line between Vientiane, the Laotian capital, and Kunming in Yunnan province.