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Agricultural alliance addresses hot issues

03 December 2012
China Agricultural University; (LtoR) Zhang Xiaoyi (President, Kingenta Ecological Engineering Co); Zhai Zhixi (Vice Chair, CAU University Council)

China's top agricultural university has reaffirmed its commitment to develop an international research centre of excellence with The University of Southern Queensland.

China Agricultural University Council Vice Chair Zhixi Zhai, who led an international delegation to the USQ Toowoomba Campus in November, said the two institutions had a bright future together, with agriculture itself to undergo dramatic changes in the years to come.

“China Agricultural University is one of the best national universities in China,” Mr Zhai said. “And the University of Southern Queensland is one of the best universities in Australia.

“In the future we will see great change in agriculture and we will need to work closely with agriculture, biology and biotechnology for environmental protection and management – it is my hope that CAU and USQ will work jointly to address some hot issues the world will face.”

The Chinese delegation visited USQ to not only reaffirm the formal academic partnership between the two institutions, but to explore broader collaborative opportunities, and to see firsthand USQ’s capabilities especially in regard to innovation in agriculture.

One project already under way as part of a China Research Innovation is ‘vCloud’, which addresses ‘Sustainable Futures’ priorities through climate, environmental and ecological modelling; sustainable and profitable farming systems initiatives; adaptation to climate variability and change; and socio-economic modelling and climate finance.

Mr Zhai said agriculture, which was fundamental to every country, regardless of its contribution to GDP, was crucial to future food security issues, and sustainability.

“Nobody can deny the importance of agriculture, especially for large populations like China,” he said. “Agriculture is always the first industry in China, and without that first industry, the second, third and fourth could not be possible.

“Agriculture will need to meet the demands of future social development, but also be a sound foundation for industries globally.

“Between CAU and USQ, we have a collaboration between universities with a strong common interest, bringing the best of agricultural studies, and the best of agricultural and engineering, providing a big vision for the future.”

Media Contact:

Jim Campbell: +617 4631 2977 or 0434 491 129.

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