Young Tajik boy shows how Confucius Institute flourishes
Updated 19:37, 12-Jun-2019
He Weiwei, Bi Jianlu, Liang Qipen

Thousands of young people in Tajikistan have become die-hard fans of Chinese culture. The passion for their neighbor is on full display at the Confucius Institute in the capital city of Dushanbe. 

Confucius Institutes are a window for foreigners to learn more about China. 

Students in Tajikistan. /CGTN Photo

Students in Tajikistan. /CGTN Photo

A typical story of a young boy at Confucius Institute

Alive Fariddun, whose Chinese name is Li Fan, performed two solo songs at a gala and a final exam for students at the Confucius Institute in Tajik National University. His passage of the final exam has earned him a certificate. 

“I selected a Chinese song of a movie about the Monkey King. It took me one month to practice,” said Fariddun. He’s already quite a star in the school after winning a national singing competition in 2017. 

Li Fan sings two songs at a gala and a final exam for students at the Confucius Institute in Tajik National University. /CGTN Photo

Li Fan sings two songs at a gala and a final exam for students at the Confucius Institute in Tajik National University. /CGTN Photo

It’s Fariddun’s third year studying at the Confucius Institute. From the beginning, his musical talent impressed his Chinese teacher, who encouraged him to study the language. That’s when he got to know Chinese pop songs.

"I'm interested in Chinese culture," he said. He learned a lot of Chinese songs in his music class, and even got a chance to perform in the Chinese city of Urumqi last year.

'China craze' in Tajikistan

The number of students learning Chinese in the Confucius Institute at Tajik National University has grown from fewer than 200 to over 4,500 since its establishment in 2008. 

The institute offers a variety of classes from Chinese dancing, calligraphy ad Chinese musical instruments to paper cutting, martial arts, traditional Chinese medicine and tea culture.

“Many students love to learn Chinese because they are attracted by these aspects of Chinese culture," said Ma Chi, deputy director of the institute. She also said not only do the Tajik students learn from Chinese teachers, the teachers also learn from them about the Tajik culture.

The institute organizes all kinds of competitions and activities for singing and the Chinese language.

Kosimov Farruh Adulmuninovinch, director of the aforementioned Confucius Institute, said all these facilitate the communication and exchanges between the two nations. “The Confucius Institute is the best way for people-to-people exchanges between our two countries. It helps to get to know each other and boost mutual understanding,” he added.

Practicing the idea of Confucius

Students playing Chinese musical instruments. /CGTN Photo

Students playing Chinese musical instruments. /CGTN Photo

Fair education for all, harmony is the most precious, harmony in diversity, and teaching students in accordance to their aptitude. Ma said they are here practicing the idea of Confucius.

Talking about the different voices about China’s overseas Confucius Institutes, she said truth will emerge as China does not take resources from Tajikistan, and they are just building bridges between cultures and trust between two peoples. She believes their love for students and respect and dedication shown to the students and Tajik people will earn their trust.

Ma told us they also have a career center to help local students find jobs in Chinese companies in Tajikistan, hence making great contributions to the local economy.

As of 2019, over 2,000 students have received Chinese government's scholarship and scholarship from the Confucius Institute to further their studies in China.

As a close neighbor, China says it always stands ready to strengthen the synergy of the Belt and Road Initiative with Tajikistan's development strategy to advance neighborliness and boost cultural and people-to-people exchanges.