Chinese lessons

LI Xingzhi, President of the China Educational Instrument and Equipment Corporation

South Africa, a developing country, like China, both have a lot of room for improvement in educational industry, comparing to developed countries. Educational equipment, as an important part of educational supply, relates to several different sectors such as basic education, higher education, and vocational education etc.

LI Xingzhi, President of the China Educational Instrument and Equipment Corporation (CEIEC), host of international Chinese pavilion at the 2014 African EduWeek in Johannesburg, spoke to Annemarie Roodbol about investing in educational equipment.

Can you tell us more about the CEIEC?

Approved by the State Council and established in 1978, the China Educational Instrument and Equipment Corporation (CEIEC) is a comprehensive domestic enterprise specializing in educational instruments and equipment. CEIEC is one of standing members of Worlddiac and a member of China Council for the Promotion of International Trade. We have affiliated agency in Shanghai, Tianjin, Shenyang, Guangzhou and Hongkong.

Over the past 30 years, the CEIEC has contributed to China’s educational career by providing strong supports to national key projects, key universities, national key laboratories and educational institutions of different levels, supplying hundreds billions of educational & scientific equipments.

Providing high quality educational equipment to the international market is the CEIEC’s ultimate goal. Chinese-made high quality educational equipment has been exported to Asia, Europe, America, Australia, and Africa through trade cooperation and international. The CEIEC is endeavoring to realize the internationalisation of Chinese educational equipment.

What current projects are you currently involved with?

Taking advantage of the CEIEC’s name and our influence in China’s educational equipment industry, we are trying to enhance co-operation with both domestic and international educational equipment companies by making the “Chinese Educational Instrument Enterprise Export Alliance” the center of Chinese quality educational supplies. We are also endeavoring to improve our competency edge to provide the best service to educational institutions. This project is initiating and there are substantial endeavors yet to make, but we will persist.

The CEIEC has been promoting Chinese fine-quality educational supplies and laboratory solutions to the world. So far we have established collaboration with more than 50 countries’ educational institutions, departments, and famous science and education companies. The internationalisation of Chinese educational equipment is being realised.

What opportunities do you see in South Africa and Africa?

The Republic of South Africa is a developing country like China, we both have a large room for improvement in educational industry, compared to developed countries. Educational equipment, as an important part of educational supply, relates to several different sectors such as basic education, higher education, and vocational education. It is one of the most important criteria of a country’s educational growth. Therefore, we can see huge international market potential for Africa’s educational equipment.

Supported by the China Ministry of Education, we have exported our equipment and instruments to Nigeria, Sudan and Ethiopia and have set up trusting co-operation in recent years. In February and April, South Africa’s Minister of Basic Educational Department, Angie Motshekga, and her fellow officials visited the CEIEC twice, and extended great interest in Chinese educational equipment. I do believe that China’s co-operation with South African and southern African countries has been promoted by African EduWeek. I believe that the collaboration and development is our common wish.

China produces the most educational equipment in the world both in quantity and category. Its products are highly competitive in quality, price and function to mention but a few. Through 35 years of economic reform, China has a lot in common with South Africa in its educational development progress. We can learn from each other, especially in the sectors of basic education, pre-school education and vocational education.

Why will your products be a good addition to the South African education and training sector

China’s educational equipment has gone through rapidly development along with China’s science technology development. Our products have become more and more competitive in the international market, especially in developing countries. Due to the similarity of China and South Africa’s educational development, there’re are many experiences for both countries to learn from each other.

Why did you decide to partner with African EduWeek?

We wanted to make Chinese educational equipment well-known around the world, establish friendship and co-operation. First of all, South Africa, as the host country of African EduWeek, was the most important reason that attracted us to the exhibition. Both being members of BRICS, we have many aspects in common. These include our development paths and our governments’ focus on education.

The Basic Education Department of South Africa visited China twice this year. Your Minister came on the first visit and gave 7 suggestions about the educational exchange between South Africa and China, among which deep co-operation on educational equipment is the most important aspect. “African EduWeek” was an excellent communication platform. The theme ‘China’s South Africa Year’ was agreed upon in 2013 by the two countries’ national leaders. As the most influential state-owned educational equipment company, the CEIEC hoped to reinforce South African-China educational exchange through EduWeek.

Secondly, South Africa as the heart of Sub-Saharan Africa has a great influence on neighboring regions. The reason we chose South Africa as the partner of promotion and co-operation because of its economic strength, stable development and the great educational infrastructure. At the same time, South Africa is the leader of Southern African Development Community (SADC), which has close ties with the other African countries. These reasons make South Africa our first choice for partners.

Last but not the least, we valued the recommendation and support of the Embassy of China in South Africa. The CEIEC had been in active contact with the Chinese Embassy in foreign countries. The counselor of the Educational Section of China in South Africa has strongly recommended this event to us, which shows the great support from the Chinese Embassy in South Africa on China-South African educational exchanges.

What was your main focus at the event?

We wanted to enhancing communications, establish close co-operation between the South African Educational Department and China, and promote Chinese educational equipment. We focused on establishing contacts and impressing local educational experts by presenting our products, so that we can obtain first-hand information about the market. We also expected to improve co-operation with institutions, agents and dealers.

Can you share the secret of your success?

Thanks to China’s economic reform since 1978, the CEIEC has benefited from the social rapid development. Along with the rapid growth of comprehensive national power, and the increasing investment in education, the industry of scientific and educational instrument was greatly enhanced. The productivity, the technical capability, and the quality of domestic educational equipment were vastly improved.

As an exclusively-invested state-owned enterprise of China Ministry of Education, the CEIEC grew out of the education industry, and in turn serves education, and grows with the education industry.

With 35 years’ of government background and customer resource, the CEIEC values integrity and quality, providing the best service to the education industry.

The CEIEC insists on scientific management, humanity, integrity and innovation. It has a standard business procedure and staff evaluation system.

Seizing the opportunity of educational supply’s rapid growth, and our superior group, the China Education Publishing & Media Group, going public, the CEIEC is trying its best to make itself known as an international-famous educational equipment supplier that represents China’s best.

Annemarie Roodbol


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