The ‘Belt and Road’ initiative to develop a bridge linking South-East Asia to Europe has reached its funding target

Science and engineering graduates will be rewarded by being given a free trip to a cruise ship in China, where they will have a chance to learn more about the continent’s natural resources.

The Belt and Roads Initiative, a partnership between the Department of Science, Technology and Innovation (DTI) and the Department for International Development (DfID), will launch on Thursday with a special launch event in the Chinese port city of Zhengzhou.

“This initiative will be a great opportunity to introduce students to some of the most beautiful and interesting places on earth,” said DTI Deputy Director of International Education, Professor David Fidler.

A student will be encouraged to travel to the ship in an interactive environment, where he or she will learn about maritime heritage, cultural practices and maritime heritage trade routes, as well as explore the local food culture.

There will be opportunities for students to visit some of China’s most important natural heritage sites including the Gobi Desert, Gobi Mountains and the Great Wall of China.

According to the DTI, the trip will also be a chance for students from the region to “examine their own cultural identities and understand the richness of Chinese life”.

“Students can see China’s diverse cultural traditions and cultural heritage, learn about the rich history of the country, and enjoy a unique experience in China,” said Professor Fidlers.

In addition to the cruise ship, students will also have the opportunity to learn about South-east Asia and how it relates to Europe, Asia, Australia and beyond.

This initiative has been in the works for over a decade, with a recent announcement in October 2017.

Professor Fidlin said: “This is a very exciting opportunity for young students from South East Asia and the world to discover more about their homeland and learn about its rich history, culture and history of trade.”

For more information on the Belt & Road Initiative, visit: http://www.dti.gov.uk/BeltAndRoad/index.html