India strengthens bilateral ties in education at 40th UNESCO GC

Union HRD Minister, Shri Ramesh Pokhriyal, held bilateral talks with the respective education ministers of Norway, Bangladesh, Mexico, Thailand, UAE, and Malaysia in Paris on November 13, 2019.

November 14, 2019

Ministry of HRD initiatives such as Study in India, GIAN, SPARC have created higher education opportunities for international students in India

Access to quality education is provided through teacher learning program ‘Nishtha’ and online portals like ‘SWAYAM’, available to foreign students

Strategies have been developed for international mobility of students and faculty between higher education institutions in UNESCO member countries

Research scholarships are currently being provided to 1,000 ASEAN students, with 2,500 scholarships given through Study in India since 2018

Union HRD Minister, Shri Ramesh Pokhriyal, held bilateral talks with the respective education ministers of Norway, Bangladesh, Mexico, Thailand, UAE, and Malaysia on November 13, 2019, as part of the 40th UNESCO General Conference held in Paris. The various meetings acknowledged the scope for enhanced bilateral cooperation between India and these countries, as well as the many Ministry of Human Resource Development (HRD) initiatives taken to promote the education sector in India, according to an official release.

Shri Pokhriyal met with Norway’s Minister of Research and Higher Education, Ms. Iselin Nybø, to discuss collaborative research opportunities between top education institutions in India and Norway. He touched upon initiatives such as Study in India, Global Initiative for Academic Network (GIAN), and Scheme for Promotion of Academic and Research Collaboration (SPARC), which help create Higher Education opportunities for International exchange students, and invited Ms. Nybø to a follow-up meeting at the beginning of 2020. 

Shri Pokhriyal also discussed the Study In India initiative with Thailand Education Minister, Shri Nataphol Teepsuwan, explaining how it provides students from Thailand with a 100 per cent waiver of fees and access to special scholarships. Similarly, Shri Pokhriyal met with Dr. Maszlee Malik, Education Minister of Malaysia and invited him to participate in both Study in India and GIAN. In support of this, India has shared an MoU on Mutual Recognition of Academic Qualifications, gauging the opportunities for collaboration between the two countries.

Shri Pokhriyal also met with Dr. Dipu Moni, Education Minister of Bangladesh, on the scope for cooperation in the sector. Addressing similar challenges shared between India and Bangladesh, Dr. Moni stated Bangladesh’s suitability for research collaborations with top Indian institutions. Lastly, Shri Pokhriyal met with Shri Esteban Moctezuma Barragan, Education Minister of Mexico, to acknowledge the common challenges faced in each country and the potential for long-term cooperation in the sector.

Additionally, Shri Pokhriyal addressed a Ministerial meeting on how India has always promoted diversity and inclusion in education through the exchange of international students. He also mentioned how access to quality education is provided with the help of teacher learning program ‘Nishtha’ and online portals like ‘SWAYAM’, available to both Indian and foreign students. India has provided over 1,000 research scholarships to ASEAN students and over 2,500 scholarships under the Study in India program since 2018. These meetings help in developing strategies to improve the mobility of students and faculty between higher education institutions in UNESCO member countries.