The initiative offers free access to Chinese lessons for Pakistani workers of the projects and students from Islamkot and nearby towns and villages who will receive free textbooks and other language-learning resources provided by the teaching staff of CIUK. As of now, 40 workers and 60 students have been enrolled in the first class.
"As a leading energy solution provider, Shanghai Electric recognizes its role to educate and train the next generation of electrical engineers and technicians, as well as help more students to launch their careers in the energy industry. Our previous initiatives have seen the Thar Block-1 project arranging on-board training sessions to help local workers to improve their skills and inviting senior technicians to pass on their experience to newly hired employees," said Meng Donghai, deputy manager of Shanghai Electric Power Generation Engineering Company.
"Closer economic ties between China and Pakistan have created more business opportunities for people from the two countries, and we hope the Chinese language training program can equip local workers and students with a meaningful skill as they advance towards their next career goals, as well as serve as a window for connecting the two cultures, enhancing mutual understanding and China-Pakistan friendship," Meng added.
"The Chinese language training program launched by Shanghai Electric will be beneficial to the students in a remote area like Islamkot. It is a unique and valuable educational opportunity that will allow them to learn more about Chinese culture and find better jobs in the future," said Muhammad Nasiruddin Khan, Pakistani director of the CIUK.
"I have gradually developed a great interest in learning Chinese while working with Chinese employees in Thar Block-1 Integrated Coal Mine and Power Project. I am very glad that Shanghai Electric can provide me with such an opportunity to learn Chinese, which will give me better employment prospects in the future, as there are a large number of China-Pakistani cooperation projects in Pakistan. Being able to speak Chinese is a standout skill," said a student who joined the program.
In 2017, Pakistan officially joined the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), and strengthened China-Pakistan cooperation has made Chinese an in-demand course for those who want to work for local Chinese companies. The rise of Chinese language training programs in the country has helped fill the communication gap between China and Pakistan, and also enabled more locals to land their dream jobs.
In recent years, Shanghai Electric has helped Pakistan build numerous energy infrastructure with industry-leading energy technologies through the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). The EPC contract for the Thar Block-1 Integrated Coal Mine and Power Project, which features two 660-megawatt coal-fired power plants and a coal mine with an annual output of 7.8 million tons, was signed in April 2019. As a priority CPEC project, the plants will optimize Pakistan's energy mix and significantly increase the country's energy security.
Caption: Shanghai Electric has launched a Chinese language training program for Pakistan's personnel on Thar Block-1 Integrated Coal Mine and Power Project