India Taiwan: Building the bridge through education
A key factor to boost economic development of nations has been workforce development as it is a way to strengthen human resource capacity and an important vehicle to develop a skilled and competent workforce is education as higher levels of education help boost a nation’s productivity.
Higher levels of education can increase a nation’s productivity and improve citizen participation rates and engagement with human rights. Education allows individuals to gain a greater sense of inclusion, feel more respected for the skills and knowledge they possess, and can translate their skills into work opportunities.
India has the world's largest youth population with 356 million people in the age group of 10-24. The number of students enrolled in universities outside of their own country rose from 2 million to 3.6 million from 2000 to 2010, providing a huge opportunity in using education to build a bridge between India and Taiwan.
According to the Taiwan Ministry of Education, more than 67,000 Taiwan students went abroad to study or work in 2018 whereas the number of Indian students in Taiwan reached 2,783 in 2019, 115% higher than in 2016 according to the Ministry of Education. The appeal of having 16 Taiwanese universities in QS World University Ranking (2021) and 35 Taiwanese universities in the top 300 of the QS Asia ranking will help attract Indian students given the high quality of education.
To enable a two-way exchange, Taiwan has funded National Tsing Hua University in 2011 to set up the Taiwan Education Centre in India with local universities as a part of the Taiwan Studies Project in India initiative. Taiwan has also taken other initiatives to help with the transition between education and working through a short-term internship program, Taiwan Experience Education. The program aims to familiarize Indian students with Taiwan’s job market, education system and society.
In a world racing to achieve advancements in technology and science, education will be a key factor moving forward. Leveraging the higher education opportunities as well as the emerging trend of students studying abroad, India and Taiwan can strengthen their ties as both look to an ever-stronger friendship in the post-Covid global order.