The United Arab Emirates (UAE) recently announced that it will introduce Chinese classes in 100 schools next year and will roll out further measures to encourage students to learn Chinese in the future, Xinhuanet.com reported.
Students and parents in the UAE believe that as China becomes an important exporter of knowledge and technology, learning Chinese will bring tangible benefits.
The UAE encouraging students to learn Chinese is the epitome of worldwide “Mandarin fever”.
The strong interest in Chinese culture including Chinese characters, Chinese traditional medicine, films, TV dramas and Chinese food all boost the enthusiasm for learning Mandarin.
Peruvian girl Piura said once you have mastered the skill, writing Chinese characters is as enjoyable as creating a piece of art.
Thomas from Mexico explained that his interest in Chinese traditional medicine made him overcome the linguistic barrier. Now, he can not only read medical books written in ancient Chinese, but has also translated the Inner Canon of the Yellow Emperor, an important ancient Chinese medical text, from Chinese into his mother tongue.
Many young Vietnamese people are also fond of learning Chinese, as they want to understand Chinese TV dramas without subtitles, hoping to talk freely with their Chinese idols one day.
The optimism surrounding China’s growing economy is also a factor that creates a global ambition to learn Mandarin.
Halse has already been to China for business and learned the language by chance. It is his Chinese proficiency that allowed him to become the first Indian employee at the Indian branch of China’s largest steel producer, Baoshan Iron and Steel Co., Ltd.
“I used to be a rural youth. It is learning Chinese that has totally changed my fate.”
Apart from being fond of Chinese culture and optimistic about China’s economy, another reason why foreigners are learning the language is that they believe in Chinese concepts.
The Chinese concept of harmony in diversity and inclusion lays the foundation for jointly building the Belt and Road to achieve win-win results through cooperation, which is well received by Belt and Road countries.
“China is a multicultural country that is very friendly to people all over the world,” said Marisa Mortier, a graduate student of the department of sinology in the University of Leuven in Belgium, adding that people from different countries and cultures should communicate more, try to understand each other more and work together to create a better future.