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China Now In Scotland

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China Now in Scotland (CNIS) is the most important festival ever devoted to China in this country. Originally conceived by the business community, it has gained political support at the highest level, including Chinese Premier Wen Jia Bao and Scotland's First Minister, Alex Salmond.

At its core is an ambition to enthuse, inform and inspire people in Scotland about a country whose influence in the world is growing exponentially and to create a lasting legacy which will see closer links forged between both nations.

Co-inciding with the Beijing Olympics, CNIS will extend across Scotland's main population centres through an exciting programme of events from the classroom to the boardroom. A comprehensive nine-month programme, officially launched just after Chinese New Year, will explore business, cultural, educational, scientific and sports-related themes. The programme is designed to help transform perceptions of modern China and show Scotland's commitment to stronger strategic engagement with China.

Frances Christensen is general manager for the Confucius Institute for Scotland (CIS) and project manager for China Now in Scotland (CNIS). Frances previously worked in international markets for the Scottish Tourist Board (VisitScotland) and Scottish Airports, before moving to the education sector where her work took her to China, the Middle East, India and South East Asia.

Patron of CNIS is Sir Robert Smith, who has an extensive portfolio of positions including chairmanships of Weir Group plc and Scottish & Southern Energy plc. He is a non-executive director of Aegon UK plc, Standard Bank Group Ltd, and 3i Group plc.  He holds the post of Chancellor of the University of Paisley, which has almost 300 Chinese students, the majority of whom are studying for qualifications in business, computing or media.

Current participants in CNIS include: Arup Group Scotland, China-Britain Business Council (CBBC), Royal Botanic Gardens, Ricefield Gallery, Orkney Science Festival, Scotland-China Association and Scottish Football Association, as well as a number of Scottish universities and local authorities. Among the sponsors are Lufthansa and Euro Hostels.

For full programme details:

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