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UK announces increased funding for China Capabilities Programme

The Prime Minister is increasing funding to further boost skills and knowledge for government staff on China.

  • The Prime Minister announces doubling UK funding for 2024/25 to build expertise on China.
  • Will boost Mandarin language skills and UK’s ability to engage with and understand China, while protecting national security.

The Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, is increasing funding to further boost skills and knowledge for government staff on China, including on economic and military policy as well as Mandarin language skills.

Extra financial support will be provided for the cross-department ‘China Capabilities Programme’ which operates to increase Chinese expertise across the UK government.

Since the last Integrated Review in 2021, the government has taken a number of steps to increase knowledge of and expertise on China, including provision for the training of more than 170 civil servants in Mandarin.

The Foreign Secretary, James Cleverly, said:

It’s vital that our diplomats and civil servants have the understanding and expertise to engage and adapt to the increasing challenge posed by China, and China’s growing role in world affairs.

This extra resource will help boost knowledge and language skills across government, in the face of the systemic challenge that China poses to the UK’s security, prosperity, and values.

The Integrated Review Refresh launched today (Monday 13 March) sets out how - in the last two years - the UK has become increasingly concerned about the military, diplomatic and economic activity of the Chinese Communist Party.

This includes military activity over Taiwan, attempts at coercion, and the sanctioning of British MPs. China is becoming more authoritarian at home and more assertive overseas.

This increase in funding is another example of the action the UK is taking to ensure effective engagement with China, while protecting national security.

Notes to Editors:

A smaller pilot programme was launched last year, which delivered:

  • The training of 170 civil servants in Mandarin, with 20 going through a language immersion programme in Taiwan.
  • Training to hundreds of HMG staff, increased China expertise in the tech and military sectors. Courses also delivered on culture, government structures and policymaking.
  • Establishment of the China experts’ advisory group to test and inform Government policymaking, with a broad range of external specialists.

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Channel website: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/prime-ministers-office-10-downing-street

Original article link: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/uk-announces-increased-funding-for-china-capabilities-programme

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