Antigua and Barbuda launch first ever Confucius Institute in Eastern Caribbean

The Confucius Institute in Antigua and Barbuda is now officially the first Confucius Institute in the country in the Eastern Caribbean. The Institute will actively carry out the Chinese language teaching and strive to provide vocational education training for youth based on actual local needs.

The launch took place at the Antigua and Barbuda Institute for Continuing Education (ABICE) Friday morning.

Deputy Director of Education Lynn Weste-Payne said, “the institute will play a positive role in expanding educational and cultural exchanges and cooperation between the two countries and enhancing mutual understanding and friendship between the two peoples.”

Education Minister Michael Browne remarked, “it is not enough that Math and English be compulsory subjects. Math and English being compulsory subjects was 20 years ago”

“I think that in order for our students to be adequately prepared” he went on, “a foreign language must be included and regarded… as not only an add-on, but as a must in order to survive in this global economy.”

The opening marked the completion of a journey which began in October, 2018 when Education Minister Michael Browne along with his delegation visited the Confucius Institute Headquarters in China.

There had talks with Deputy Chief Executive of the Confucius Institute Headquarters Ma Jianfei and later signed the Agreement on the Joint Establishment of the Confucius Institute in Antigua and Barbuda.

Students from ABICE, Sir Novelle Richards Academy and St. Anthony’s Secondary were also in attendance.The institute’s Chinese partner is Zhejiang International Studies University.