Islamabad, July 18: The alliance of higher education institutes of Pakistan and China represents the spirit of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms Ahsan Iqbal said on Monday.
CPEC meant Pakistan’s entry into global supply chain, he said addressing the inaugural ceremony of the first Pakistan-China Forum on Higher Education, held at Air University, jointly organised by the Higher Education Commission (HEC) and China Association of Higher Education (CAHE).
Scholars from the higher education bodies of the two countries spoke at the one-day forum on “Challenges of Equitable Access and Quality in Higher Education”. Faculty and students from the universities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi attended the session.
The minister appreciated the efforts of HEC for building CPEC University Alliance and CPEC Consortium of Business Schools.
“These efforts will help build collaborative linkages and intellectual connectivity which symbolise the spirit of CPEC,” he added.
He welcomed the Chinese scholars to Pakistan which he hoped would explore new avenues of mutual cooperation between the two countries.
The minister said that the government was fully supporting HEC in its efforts in the capacity building of existing higher education institutes (HEIs) to prepare skilled and trained human resource for CPEC and promote cultural harmony between the two countries.
Earlier, in his welcome address, HEC Executive Director Dr Arshad Ali said higher education was not a goal but a pre-requisite in a knowledge-based economy.
The forum focused on three areas including national role and contribution in improving quality of higher education; ensuring quality with large-scale increase in access and balancing quality of higher education in diverse regions.
The forum started with a welcome note from the Vice Chancellor, Air University, Air Vice Marshal (Retd) Faaiz Amir and a scholarly exposition of the theme by Lt Gen (Retd) Muhammad Asghar.
The leader of the Chinese delegation Xiaomei Wang highlighted the need for greater cooperation between the academia of the two countries.–APP