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Chinese embassy donates books to GIBS library

Chinese Proverb ... "To read without reflecting is like eating without digesting."

A delegation from the Chinese embassy in South Africa donated 125 books to the University of Pretoria's Gordon Institute to Business Science (GIBS) library at the business school's campus in Illovo, recently in a bid to foster bilateral relations and cooperation between China and the school.

The delegation, led by Deputy Consul General, Ren Xiaoxia and Vice Consul, Sun Yanjing presented the books to the Dean of GIBS, Professor Nicola Kleyn in a handover ceremony on 4 November 2016. The books which are a potent mix of Chinese philosophy, economics, history, heritage, geography, civilisation, language, art and medicine, and architecture are all latest editions which are not available in the country.

In her remarks, Ren Xiaoxia acknowledged GIBS as a very important institution with a high quality of education and great cultural influence in the country and she hoped the books would be useful referral points for students at the school.

She added a quote from philosopher, Chairman Mao, "Learning without thought is labour lost; thought without learning is perilous." She said, "Books are symbols of growth and potential and we hope to have planted a seed that will grow into something of great significance in the future."

In expressing the school's appreciation of the gift, Professor Nicola Kleyn said, "The new collection would add significant value to the library which will be accessed by the University of Pretoria in its entirety." 

She added, "Business takes place in a cultural context and the books serve as an instrument to connect businesses with context and country. We sit on the fringe of the university and business and hope to get a greater understanding and appreciation of China from the books." China is without doubt one of the most fascinating business case studies of our time.

Ren Xiaoxia further added that through the various programmes that the consulate was involved in, such as scholarships, reading clubs – she hoped to promote a deeper and more meaningful cooperation in the areas of student exchange, research and acquisition of language skills in Chinese and English. She hoped more South African youth would take up some of the offers at hand.


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