UWTSD welcomes British Consul General for Wuhan


The University of Wales Trinity Saint David was delighted to welcome the new British Consul General for Wuhan, Mr Gareth Hoar, to the University’s Swansea Business Campus.

Gareth Hoar

Mr Hoar was visiting Swansea as he prepares to take up his duties at the British Consulate in Wuhan in September. As part of his visit, he was given a guided tour of the University’s Confucius Institute and met with staff who work with the Chinese community in Swansea.

He said: "I am delighted to be visiting Swansea and have been impressed by the ambition, energy and foresight shown by the City's government, academic leaders and businesses in developing closer relationships with their counterparts in China.  UWTSD's academic programmes with Wuhan University of Technology underpin Swansea's burgeoning relationship with Wuhan and play an important role in nurturing talent and cultivating stronger economic, social and cultural ties between the two cities. I am impressed by the strategic vision UWTSD has shown in creating the Global Academy, which demonstrates the university's  international outlook and commitment to excellence by continuing to expand its international outreach.   I look forward to playing my part in strengthening Swansea's existing ties with Wuhan and supporting the creation of new partnerships between the two cities that will further enrich the relationship between our countries.”

He was met by the University’s Pro-Vice Chancellor for International and Enhancement, Professor Simon Haslett. Professor Haslett leads the Wales Global Academy as well as the University’s enhancement activity. He has played an essential role in developing strategic partnerships and opportunities with educational institutions in China.

Professor Haslett said that “I am delighted to welcome Mr Hoar to the University to discuss the University’s commitment to strengthening the links between the cities of Swansea and Wuhan, and to explain the existing wide-ranging engagement with the Wuhan University of Technology, which includes the launch in 2016 of the jointly developed UWTSD Wuhan Ligong College that broadens the opportunities for student from Wuhan to study in Swansea and for UK-based students to visit Wuhan. I am so glad that Mr Hoar is visiting Swansea at the start of his tenure as British Consul General for Wuhan so that we can begin to build a solid working relationship with his office from the outset, which I am looking forward to greatly. The University is already planning a high-level visit to Wuhan in the autumn in conjunction with the Wales in Wuhan Week.”

One of the initiatives is the Wales Global Academy which was launched in July 2018. The Wales Global Academy has been established by the University of Wales Trinity Saint David in its Strategic Plan 2017-2022 to provide a focus for its vision of taking the best of Wales to the world and bringing the best of the world to Wales. It is the hub for a network of global institutions who are linked to the University in collaborative partnerships in its broadest sense.

Another key relationship is the University’s partnership with Wuhan University of Technology, which was established in 2005. The university campus is based in the city of Wuhan in the Hubei province of eastern China. In January 2018, the two universities celebrated their strategic partnership with a series of events held in Swansea, where UWTSD bestowed an Honorary Doctorate (Doctor of Science) upon Professor Qingjie ZHANG, President of WUT, in recognition of his strategic leadership and considerable academic achievements.  

The visit was facilitated by members of Swansea Council. Robert Francis-Davies, Cabinet Member for Investment, Regeneration and Tourism, said: “I was in Wuhan earlier this year to sign a Friendship City agreement between our cities. We already enjoy strong cultural ties through the legacy of Swansea missionary Griffith John who set up the city’s first hospital and college in the 19th century. Mr Hoar’s appointment will help further cement the relationship.

“Wuhan is an amazing place. It’s exciting, innovative and one of the leading economic powerhouses of China. Being a twin city means we can work together on themes like education and economic development which will foster investment and trade.

“In China their approach to trade is to make friends first and do business after. And rather than develop government-to-government arrangements, they prefer city-to-city deals – their city leaders talking directly to ours.”

UWTSD’s Swansea Business Campus is also home to the Confucius Institute, an institution which has been providing Chinese language and culture courses and workshops for over ten years. The Confucius Institute offers a range of courses for pupils, students, and communities in Wales. It offers Chinese language courses, such as Mandarin at GCSE and ‘A’ Level as well as the world-recognised Chinese proficiency test, Hanyu Shuiping Kaoshi (HSK). It also hosts cultural events, such as Chinese New Year celebrations, networking events for local businesses, and exchange visits from Chinese artists and musicians.

Further Information

For further information, please email: press@uwtsd.ac.uk