At the ASEAN educational exchange week held in Guiyang, Wang Yongli, the deputy director of Hanban, disclosed that China has already opened 260 Confucius Institutes in over 70 countries and regions.
"For the past few years, China has been growing stronger, and its influence in the world is continuously increasing," said Wang Yongli. "'Chinese language fever' has swept the world, and according to incomplete statistics regarding the US, from 2005 to 2007 the number of American middle school students studying Chinese rose by 200 percent." The number of Confucius Institutes is also rising quickly. According to Hanban's figures, by the end of July 2008, there will already be 261 Institutes in 75 countries and regions.
Hanban was formed in 1987 and is also known as the Confucius Institute Headquarters. In 20 years, Hanban has continuously worked to provide Chinese language and culture education resources and services abroad, advancing the instruction of Chinese as a foreign language in the world.
By People's Daily Online