MAPUTO, Nov. 20 (Xinhua) -- Officials celebrated here on Monday the fifth anniversary of the Confucius Institute (CI) in Mozambique, hailing its contribution to the African country's national development and cultural exchanges with China.
Florida Hugo, deputy minister of higher education, said during celebrating activities that the institute is part of the efforts towards closer Mozambique-China cooperation.
"It is precisely within the framework of these relations established between China and Mozambique that we will continue to nurture all the confidence and support to consolidate cooperation," said the deputy minister, citing the 2016 introduction of four-year degree courses in the Chinese language to highlight the institute's development.
The degree courses will offer more opportunities for Mozambican students to visit China and to work in Chinese enterprises operating in Mozambique.
More than 4,000 Mozambican students have benefited from the IC's short-term and degree courses over the five years, according to Hugo.
The IC has been run as part of Mozambique's oldest and prestigious Eduardo Mondlane University (UEM) based in the capital of Maputo.
On the same accasion, UEM head Orlando Quilambo praised the CI for providing a good platform for the Mozambican people to learn the Chinese language and culture.
"The cooperation between the Confucius Institute and Eduardo Mondlane University has brought visible results and is generating an impact in the economic area, resulting in the development programs of the country," said Quilambo.
"The installation of the CI-UEM is bringing a visible result ...as in the case of the building that will accommodate the Sino-Mozambican Cultural Center and the School of Communication and Arts," he added.
China's ambassador to Mozambique Su Jian hoped the CI would make greater achievements.
"Looking to the future, I believe that with joint efforts between the two sides, the CI in Mozambique will achieve greater progress and contribute more to mutual learning in the cultural sphere, as well as to the development of cooperation between the two countries," he said.
As part of the celebrations on Monday, some certificates were awarded to the students with best performance in various competitions related to the Chinese language and culture.
The CI-UEM, a cooperation project between UEM and the Zhejiang Normal University of China, is designed to promote understanding between the peoples of the two countries and enhance bilateral cultural and educational exchanges.