RABAT, Nov. 9 (Xinhua) -- Karima Yatribi, the foreign dean of Confucius Institute in Rabat, Morocco, has lauded the institute for building a bridge for promoting China-Morocco cultural exchanges.
Speaking with Xinhua in a recent interview, Yatribi said that the enthusiasm of Moroccan students to learn the Chinese language has been growing, and the Confucius Institute in Morocco is a pioneer in promoting exchanges and cooperation between the two countries.
As more and more Moroccan students are interested in learning Chinese, the institute "provides them with an opportunity to understand, learn Chinese language and culture," Yatribi said.
The youngest student at the Confucius Institute in Rabat is only eight years old, and the eldest is already a grandfather, she pointed out.
"By studying at the Confucius Institutes, Moroccan students can gain opportunities to study in China, which will broaden their horizons and help them acquire more scientific and technical knowledge," the dean said.
Hasnae Naoui, a 19 year-old student at the Mohammed V University in Morocco, has been studying Chinese at the Confucius Institute in Rabat for three years.
Naoui's choice to learn Chinese was influenced by his mother and sister. "They feel that the relations between Morocco and China are now very close and the prospect of learning Chinese is very good," she said.
"After learning Chinese, I found that I like this language more and more, and I am more and more attracted by the profoundness of the Chinese culture. My life has changed a lot because of learning Chinese," she told Xinhua.
Naoui, who participated in a summer camp in China organized by the Confucius Institute in 2017, said she was very excited to experience the local Chinese customs for the first time.
Naoui expressed his wish for speaking fluent Chinese in the future. "I hope that I can pass the HSK (Chinese Proficiency Test) Level 4 exam and continue my studies in China like my sister," she said.
For Latifa Elkharouai, a 21-year-old student at Mohammed V University, Chinese culture has a unique charm.
Having studied Chinese at the Confucius Institute in Rabat for a year, said that she is very proud of her ability to speak Chinese.
Asked what motivated her to study Chinese, Elkharouai explained that Chinese is one of the working languages of the United Nations, while Morocco has close ties with China.
Indeed, this year marked the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and Morocco. The trade, cultural relations between the two sides have also been growing steadily in the past decades.
Nasser Bouchiba, president of the Africa-China Cooperation Association for Development, said that through the notes of the great traveler Ibn Battuta, the Moroccans started to know China as early as the 14th century, and now young Moroccans want to go further.
Young Moroccans are not only attracted by the Chinese culture, but also show great interest in learning China's advanced technologies, Bouchiba said.
Bouchiba said that many young Moroccans want to continue their study in China, so the Confucius Institute allows them to learn Chinese and understand Chinese culture, laying a solid foundation for them to seek further study in China.
To cater to the growing demand for learning Chinese, Morocco has set up three Confucius Institutes in Rabat, Casablanca and Tangier, with dozens of teaching points and thousands of registered students.