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China to Put Six Billion Yuan into Higher Education Projects
China will inject 6 billion yuan (US$731 million) into higher education and academic research during the Tenth Five-Year Plan for the period from 2001 to 2005, as a part of the "211 Educational Project," sources with the Ministry of Education said Monday.

The "211 Educational Project" focuses on transforming approximately 100 Chinese colleges and universities into research bases for the country's economic, technological and social problems. It will also reinforce support for new academic fields and for cross-field research.

As part of the project, an information service system combining the Internet, data banks and digitized libraries of Chinese colleges and universities will be established in order to make more efficient use of the existing infrastructure and software of each school.

The project, initiated in 1996, was China's largest educational project. Since 1996, China has put 18 billion yuan (US$2,200 million) into the project, which has greatly improved the teaching and research conditions of some universities.

Statistics indicate that by the end of 2000, the number of students enrolled at schools participating in the project at the bachelor's, master's and doctoral levels, as well as exchange students, increased by 61 percent, 108 percent, 101 percent and 45 percent, respectively. The number of professors holding doctorate degrees and the number of returned Chinese students also rose by 109 percent and 38 percent, respectively.

(People's Daily September 17, 2002)

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