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Belt and Road Language Strategic Planning and Policy Practice

Source:CICCPS Release time:2018/7/19 14:03:25 
        The “Belt and Road” is a banner of diplomacy with a big country with Chinese characteristics. The report of the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China pointed out that China actively promotes the "One Belt, One Road" international cooperation, and strives to achieve policy communication, facility connectivity, trade smoothness, capital finance, and people's hearts, creating a new platform for international cooperation and adding new momentum for common development. To achieve the "five links", you first need language communication. Among the 65 countries along the “Belt and Road”, there are 53 official languages, which are the regions with the most linguistic diversity and cultural differences in the world. As an important bridge and link between the “One Belt and One Road” economic and trade investment cooperation and civilized exchanges and mutual learning, language plays an important role in promoting China's international communication capacity building, improving the country's cultural soft power and enhancing the international voice. Looking at the world, language strategy planning is inseparable from the rise of big powers. Most major countries in the world today pay close attention to and input into their own language strategies. The two core elements of the United States as a superpower are: the internationalization of the US dollar, the US dollar as a worldwide transaction and reserve currency, and the formation of "dollar hegemony". Second, English as a "world language" enters the education system of various countries and affects the development of language and culture. Form a "language hegemony." After the September 11th incident, the United States successively issued the "National Foreign Languages Initiative Action Plan", "Defense Language Transformation Roadmap", "Language and Regional Knowledge Development Plan", "National Security Language Program", "Defense Language Skills, Regional Knowledge and Cultural Capabilities Strategy" Planning (2011-2016) and many other language policy plans and initiatives. The Russian Ministry of National Defense is responsible for identifying key foreign language languages in the field of national defense. There are 145 foreign language resources in the university, involving 9 major languages, covering many countries and regions in the world. The global promotion of French has contributed to the influence of French culture beyond its national strength. The introduction of the "National Language Strategy" in the United Kingdom has helped to maintain the former "Day of the Empire". At present, China's “Belt and Road” construction is promoting the internationalization of the RMB and the interconnection of infrastructure through the “Asian Investment Bank” and “Silk Road Fund”, and has made gratifying progress. However, the strategic goal of the “One Belt, One Road” language internationalization has not yet been clarified. The Chinese internationalization policy has yet to be clarified, and it is urgent to formulate a “One Belt, One Road” language strategic plan and action plan from the strategic height of advancing foreign diplomacy with Chinese characteristics.

       The construction of “Belt and Road” further stimulates the demand for language, and the role of language in promoting Chinese culture to “go global” is increasing.

       Domestically, the construction of the “Belt and Road” service has become an important aspect of our language and cultural work. First, in the field of education, since 2017, the Ministry of Education has signed contracts with 14 provinces (autonomous regions) and cities to promote the “One Belt and One Road” Education Action, basically covering the provinces of the “One Belt, One Road” and forming a joint promotion of the provinces and departments. The Belt and Road Initiative Network of Educational Action International Cooperation. At present, the number of students studying in the “Belt and Road” countries is as high as 200,000. Second, in terms of foreign language services, as of 2017, China's colleges and universities have opened 76 foreign language majors, covering the 24 official languages of the EU countries and the official languages of 10 ASEAN countries. Major foreign language universities across the country have planned or are generally planning to add the “Belt and Road” language. Beijing Foreign Studies University plans to open 100 languages in 2020, covering the mother tongue and official language of all countries with which China has established diplomatic relations. Third, in terms of social language, the number of enterprises engaged in language services or related services reached 72,500, and the annual output value of the "language industry" exceeded 280 billion yuan. Generally speaking, the number of foreign language languages in China's “Belt and Road” has been increasing, the language structure has continued to improve, language services have steadily improved, and language education has developed rapidly.

       On the external front, the Chinese language fever along the “Belt and Road” countries is heating up.

       First, the number of people learning Chinese has risen sharply. According to the survey report “Chinese Character Culture: The Trend of Chinese Language Spreading in Russia” issued by the Russian Academy of Linguistics Regional Research Center Yaroslavl National Normal University, the number of Russians learning Chinese increased from about 5,000 in 1997 to 56,000 in 2017. In 1997, there were 18 universities offering Russian language classes in Russia, and 179 in 2017. According to the statistics of the Ministry of Education of China, the number of international students from ASEAN countries has increased from about 50,000 in 2010 to more than 80,000 in 2016. According to the Education Office of the Chinese Embassy in France, 100,000 people in France are currently learning Chinese. According to a survey by the Australian-Chinese Relations Institute of the University of Technology, the number of Australian primary and secondary school students who have studied Chinese has doubled since 2008, reaching about 173,000, accounting for 4.7% of the total enrollment. According to a report released by the US International Education Commission, the number of primary and secondary school students studying Chinese in the United States has now reached 227,100.

       Second, the pace of Chinese “going out” has continued to accelerate. According to statistics, China has established 134 Confucius Institutes and 130 Confucius Classrooms in 51 countries along the “Belt and Road”. In 2016, the number of registered students reached 460,000, and nearly 8,000 cultural events were held, with an audience of 2.7 million. people. According to the statistics of the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television, since 2014, the average annual increase in copyright trade between China and the “Belt and Road” participating countries has reached 20%, and the proportion of total copyright trade in China has increased from 5% in 2014 to 15 in 2016. % In 2016, the total number of copyright trades between China and the countries along the route was nearly 5,000, an increase of 2,300 over 2014. In addition, at present, China has signed agreements with more than 50 countries including countries along the “Belt and Road” to translate each other's literary classics.

       The third is that overseas schools run from scratch. As of 2016, China's colleges and universities have set up four institutions abroad, and established 98 school-running projects, which are distributed in 14 countries and regions, most of which are along the “Belt and Road” area. As of April 2017, the Ministry of Education has signed mutual recognition agreements for academic degrees with 24 countries along the “Belt and Road” to strengthen education and intercommunication between China and countries along the route.

       Fourth, the concept of China's governance has been widely recognized internationally. Up to now, "Xi Jinping's Talks about Governing the Country" has been translated into more than 20 languages and editions, and more than 6.4 million copies have been issued in more than 160 countries and regions including the Belt and Road. China’s ideological and policy initiatives are moving toward the world in a way that foreign audiences can understand and see.

       At the same time, we must also see that compared with the rapidly developing situation, China’s overall guidance on the “Belt and Road” language structure, personnel training, industrial development, communication path, platform services, etc. is relatively small; Among them, the awareness of language issues from the perspective of safeguarding national security needs to be strengthened. In addition, active and targeted language intervention can further increase investment; the awareness of strengthening Chinese culture “going out” in Chinese external communication needs to be strengthened, and Chinese is included. There is still a great potential for foreign language education and teaching systems in countries along the route; there is still much room for improvement in the use of Chinese in international organizations and Internet text coverage. In addition, the language is “introduced” and “going out” is insufficient; foreign language teaching is “heavy language, light culture”, “heavy quantity, light quality”, “heavy developed countries, light developing countries”, “heavy neighboring countries, light countries along the line” "And "language tools theory", the shortage of small language talents and other issues exist to varying degrees. There is still a lot of work to be done in China on the journey from a foreign language power to a foreign language power.

       For example, at present, Chinese has not become the first foreign language in the education system of many countries along the route, and some countries have not even started Chinese teaching. In the United States, for example, the results of the Wall Street website released in July 2017 showed that Chinese is the second most commonly used foreign language in the United States. For another example, in 2013, the language enrollment of foreign language majors in colleges and universities only covered 20 kinds of 53 official languages along the “Belt and Road”, of which 11 small languages were less than 100, and 8 languages were within 50; 2016 In China, only 1063 people have gone abroad to study and train 42 non-universal languages, with an average of less than 30 languages per language. Li Yuming, the National Language and Language Working Committee, once said: "We walk on the 'Belt and Road', and one of the most lacking things in the bag is the language talent."
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