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Costa Rica gets Confucius Institute
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A new Confucius Institute was established on Monday in Latin America.

The institute at the University of Costa Rica will help meet the demand for learning Chinese language and culture and promote China-Costa Rica ties, Song Yongbo, director of the Department of Confucius Institute under Hanban, told China Daily yesterday.

Four Chinese language professors will teach at the Confucius Institute at the University of Costa Rica, Yamileth Gonzlez, the university's president, was quoted as saying by the local media on Monday.

Latest figures from Hanban, Office of Chinese Language Council International, showed that there are 17 Confucius Institutes in eight Latin American countries - five in Mexico, three in Peru, two in Columbia, two in Chile, two in Brazil, one in Argentina, one in Cuba and the newly established one in Costa Rica.

"Other countries in Latin America have also submitted applications to establish Confucius Institutes," Song said.

"Hanban is committed to making Chinese language and culture courses available to the world."

There are 307 Confucius Institutes in 78 countries and regions across the world. The first in Latin America was established in Mexico City in February 2006.

The world's first Confucius Institute was opened in 2004 in Seoul, South Korea.

Hanban has provided thousands of teachers, and teaching materials for overseas students.

(China Daily November 19, 2008)

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