Tsinghua University News

President of the Republic of Chile Sebastian Pinera visits Tsinghua University

President of the Republic of Chile Sebastian Pinera visits Tsinghua University

Receives Honorary Professorship and delivers keynote speech


On April 25th, on the occasion of the 108th anniversary of Tsinghua University, Sebastian Pinera Equeniche, President of the Republic of Chile, visited Tsinghua University. During his visit, President Pinera received the title of Honorary Professorship of Tsinghua University and delivered a speech entitled "Chile and China: Facing Together the Challenges and Opportunities of the Future".

Qiu Yong, President of Tsinghua University, had a meeting with President Pinera. The Chinese Ambassador to Chile Xu Bu attended the meeting.

The delegation from Chile included Eduardo Frei, former President of Chile, Jaime Quintana, President of the Senate of Chile, Roberto Ampuero Espinoza, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Chile, Luis Schmidt, Ambassador of Chile to China, Luis Schmidt, member of parliament, Benjamin Salas, International Advisor to the President of Chile and Andrónico Luksic, Chairman of the Luksic Group.

President Qiu welcomed President Pinera on his first visit to Tsinghua University and congratulated him on receiving the title of Honorary Professorship of Tsinghua University. President Qiu noted that 2019 is an important year for both countries, with the Second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation and the 2019 APEC Summit to be hosted by China and Chile respectively. President Qiu expressed his appreciation for the contribution made by President Pinera to the bilateral relations between China and Chile, and hoped that Tsinghua University would make greater contributions towards the cultural exchanges and scientific collaboration between the two countries.

President Qiu reviewed the fruitful outcomes achieved during his first visit to Chile last December. He noted that Tsinghua University highly valued the scientific and technological collaboration and people-to-people exchanges with Latin America. The Tsinghua University Latin America Center in Santiago, Chile, established during his visit, would contribute to the cultural exchanges, innovation in science and technology, and cooperation in education between Tsinghua University and Chile, as well as with other Latin American countries.

President Pinera said that he was very honored to visit Tsinghua University during its 108th anniversary. He highly recognized the achievements made by Tsinghua University in talent cultivation and the cooperative relationship between Tsinghua University and Chilean universities. He congratulated Tsinghua University on the establishment of the Tsinghua University Latin America Center in Chile and hoped the center would better contribute to further cooperation and exchanges between the universities of the two countries.

Following the meeting, the Honorary Professorship award ceremony was held. President Pinera was awarded the title of Honorary Professorship of Tsinghua University and delivered a keynote speech entitled “Chile and China: Facing Together the Challenges and Opportunities of the Future”. The Vice President of Tsinghua University Yang Bin moderated the event.

President Qiu noted that the title of Honorary Professorship was not only a recognition of President Pinera's achievements in the field of economics, but also a recognition of his contribution to promoting exchanges and cooperation between China and Chile. President Qiu welcomed him on becoming a member of the Tsinghua community and hoped that with his support, China and Chile would further advance their strategic partnership and deepen their exchanges and cooperation in various fields.

In his speech, "Chile and China: Facing Together the Challenges and Opportunities of the Future", President Pinera highly commended the contributions made by China in addressing global climate change and achievements in technology innovation. “We have so much to learn from your magnificent history and your magnificent country,” he said. He noted that Chile was the first Latin American country to establish diplomatic relations with China and was also the first Latin American country to sign a bilateral free trade agreement with China. The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) has not only further promoted exchanges between China and Chile, but has also built a bridge connecting many countries in the world. Chile will continue to expand and strengthen its cooperation with China.

President Pinera also hoped that young people from around the world would take action and shoulder responsibility in combating climate change and facilitating social justice.

After the speech, he answered the questions from participating students and communicated with journalists from around the world.

Li Jinliang, Dean of the International Cooperation and Exchange Office, Bai Chong-En, Dean of the School of Economics and Management, and Xue Lan, Dean of the Schwarzman College, Tsinghua University attended the event. Over 200 Tsinghua students, faculty and alumni also attended.

Sebastian Pinera Echenique was the President of Chile from 2010 to 2014 and was re-elected as the President of Chile in December 2017. He is now serving his second term as President of Chile for the 2018-2022 period.

The Tsinghua University Latin America Center was inaugurated in Santiago, Chile on December 6th, 2018. The center will act as the contact and exchange base of Tsinghua University in Latin America, serving the goal of talent cultivation of Tsinghua University and promoting research collaboration and people-to-people exchanges with Latin American countries. In the Joint Statement between the People's Republic of China and the Republic of Chile issued on April 24th, 2019, both countries highly recognized the Tsinghua University Latin America Center inaugurated in Santiago, Chile.


Writers: Wilson Khor, Angela Hua
Editors: Guo Lili, John Olbrich