NCNU forges New Southbound ties via Cherry Blossom Festival
2018 Cherry Blossom Festival, an annual spring celebration co-organized by National Chi Nan University and the Tourism Bureau under the Ministry of Transportation and Communications kicks off Feb. 9 in Nantou County. The opening event is Tea Arts exhibition featuring musical performances by Butterfly Orchestra from Puli Township and a number of other local groups.
NCNU President Oliver Su says the festival is popular with visitors from home and abroad. It also underscores the university’s close bonds with various local sectors, as well as its commitment to strengthening ties with international communities in Taiwan as part of a globalization policy.
Distinguished guests attending the opening of the festival include Soong Tzyy-jeng, director-general of Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ Central Taiwan Office; Siswadi, deputy representative of Indonesian Economic and Trade Office in Taipei; Sergio Tan Eulogio, director of Manila Economic and Cultural Office; Tupe Solomon-Tanoa’I, deputy director of New Zealand Commerce and Industry Office; and Khairul Iskandar bin Md. Yusof, director of Malaysian Friendship and Trade Center, Taipei.
First-time NCNU visitor Hsiao Chen-jung, senior negotiator at Office of Trade Negotiations under the Executive Yuan, said travel time between the university and Taipei is much shorter following the opening of Highway 6. Echoing Hsiao’s remarks, Su said NCNU will play a front-line role in advancing the government’s New Southbound Policy.
A key plank in the the government’s national development strategy, the policy seeks to enhance Taiwan’s agricultural, business, cultural, education, tourism and trade ties with the 10 Association of Southeast Asian Nations member states, six South Asian countries, Australia and New Zealand.
NCNU’s non-local enrolments comprise 72 students from 21 countries and territories, as well as 675 overseas Chinese. In addition, the university has inked cooperative memorandums of understanding with 92 higher education institutions in 24 countries and territories, and 72 in mainland China.
2018 Cherry Blossom Festival runs from Feb. 9 to March 4.