The Beijing Sun was above our heads when the Indonesian Ambassador and Madame Enni Imron Cotan, as well as Indonesian Embassy staff rode their bikes through the gates of the University of International Business and Economics’ (UIBE’s) sports field, in Chaoyang District, Beijing. The group was welcomed with cheers by the students from all ASEAN countries, who had arrived in the field since early in the morning, waiting to watch and support the Beijing Student SEA-Games 2012.
Ambassador Cotan along with the Deputy Chief of Mission of Malaysia, and diplomats from Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, the Philippines, Singapore and Lao PDR, witnessed the first ever ASEAN student sport games in Beijing, called Beijing Student SEA-Games 2012. Present in the opening ceremony, the Dean of the University of International Business and Economics, Prof. He Xiangmin and Secretary General for China-ASEAN Business Center, Mr. Xu Ning Ning.
In the opening remarks of the Beijing Student SEA-Games 2012, Ambassador Imron Cotan congratulated the students, in particular the organizing committee for hosting the important event. He stated that ASEAN is not only about politics and economics, but also about the people. The organizing of this event is indeed a great means to strengthen relationships between the young generations of ASEAN countries in Beijing, China. Ambassador Cotan also expressed his heartfelt appreciation for the support being extended by the host country which made the event possible.
After delivering his speech, Ambassador Imron Cotan received the Beijing Student SEA-Games flag, carried by nine representatives of the participants, and put the flag into its pole, as the sign of the official opening of the Beijing Student SEA-Games 2012.
The sport event is organized by Indonesian Student Association in China (Persatuan Mahasiswa Indonesia Tiongkok – Permit), in corporation with the students associations of Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore and Myanmar respectively. The Beijing Student SEA-Games 2012, the first ever, is held from 14 April to 12 Mei 2012, in campuses and sports venues in Beijing. Around 700 students from Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, the Philippines, Singapore, Lao PDR and Myanmar participate as athletes and committee members. The SEA-Games programs include: athletic, futsal, badminton, tennis, basketball, table tennis, volleyball, billiard, bowling and chess.
This students’ activities also received full support from the Chinese Government, through China-ASEAN Business Center (CABC), ASEAN – China Center (ACC), University of International Business and Economics (UIBE) and other sponsors. Aside from being ASEAN’s dialogue partner in ASEAN+1 and ASEAN+3 framework, bilateral relationships between China and ASEAN member countries in the field of education are applaudable. The Chinese Government stated that in 2011, China received more than 30.000 students from ASEAN member countries and sent 70.000 students to ASEAN countries.