14 Dec 2022 12:48

Russian Science and Higher Education Ministry planning 'turn' to the East, Africa

MOSCOW. Dec 14 (Interfax) - A new program of cooperation with the East and Africa is being prepared, while Russia's educational and scientific cooperation with unfriendly countries is decreasing, Russian Science and Higher Education Minister Valery Falkov said.

"Another challenge [to the ministry in 2022] is transformation of the system of international relations and the refocusing of educational and scientific flows to the East and the South. We realize that this turn requires a substantial number of competent professionals, so we are preparing a new educational and scientific program called Oriental and African Studies," Falkov said during Government Hour in the Federation Council.

"We need specialists who are not just fluent in languages of the regions and have a profound knowledge of their history and culture but who are also proficient in economic and geopolitical matters,' he said.

The interaction with "unfriendly countries is difficult for a number of reasons but, despite the policy of sanctions, we believe it's important to continue the involvement of our entities and scientists in international mega-science projects, including those with the European Organization for Nuclear Research, based in Geneva," Falkov said.

In 2022, "the countries traditionally friendly towards Russia preserved or even broadened the scale of educational and scientific cooperation. These include CIS members, China, India, Vietnam, and a large number of countries in Asia and Latin America," he said.

Nowadays, the Russian Science and Higher Education Ministry is focused on integrating higher educational establishments and research centers on Russia's new territories into the Russian scientific and educational space, Falkov said. "We are drafting respective laws and regulations to ensure the progressive inclusion of higher educational establishments and research centers on the new territories into the common educational and cultural space of the country," he said.

More than 30,000 students were admitted to universities in four regions [the Donetsk and Lugansk people's republics and the Zaporozhye and Kherson regions] in the new school year, and this includes 2,500 students enrolled in joint programs, Falkov said.