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Bid to attract foreign students gears up
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The country is pushing ahead in its efforts to become a leading destination for international students, riding on the wave of a growing number of foreigners coming to study in recent years.

This year alone, the authorities will increase the amount of scholarships for foreign students - a group that grows by 3,000 people every year - to attract more of those coming for advanced degrees and study, China Daily learned from the Ministry of Education in a recent interview.

An American student of Nankai University paints "I love Tianjin" on a piece of paper together with primary shchool pupils in the municipality last month, as part of an event to show support for the coming Beijing Olympics. (photo: China Daily)

The government has earmarked 500 million yuan ($71 million) for the scholarships this year, up 40 percent from that of last year.

The grants will provide each student free education and accommodation, plus a monthly bonus of 800 to 1,400 yuan, the ministry said.

The move comes on the back of a rising number of foreigners educated in the country.

Kazakhstan Prime Minister Karim Masimov is one such student.

Masimov was also awarded an honorary doctorate and named an "outstanding alumnus" by his alma mater, Wuhan University in Hubei province, on April 10 during his official visit to China.

"I was deeply touched by the city's beautiful scenery and the professors' earnest attitude toward scholarship," said Masimov, who studied in the university's law school between 1989 and 1991 when he was in his twenties.

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