Zhejiang University has signed an agreement with Imperial College London to establish a branch campus (7 acres) at the Imperial City campus of White City. According to Imperial College, the campus was originally owned by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). The new campus will become a £150 million research center that can accommodate approximately 3,000 academics. Zhejiang University is the first Chinese university to establish an overseas campus, and other Chinese universities may soon follow suit.
Zhang Xiuqin, director of the department of International Cooperation and Exchanges of China's Ministry of Education, said: "China will support and help universities to go global and achieve internationalization." She also said that Zhejiang University's preparation for overseas campuses is "valuable." "One step" will provide a reference for other Chinese universities to run overseas. Recently, Xiamen University also announced that it will establish a campus in Malaysia.
On May 15, Sir Keith O'Nions, the president of Imperial College, visited Hangzhou and signed an agreement with China on the new campus. A spokesperson for the Imperial College said that details of the implementation of the project are still under discussion. China attaches great importance to this project. Onis was not only welcomed by the leaders of Zhejiang University, but also received by senior government officials including the Minister of Education, the Governor of Zhejiang Province, and the Deputy Governor of Zhejiang Province. Xinhua News Agency, the national news agency of China, also reported this news quickly.
For Zhejiang University, the preparation for the London campus will greatly enhance its position in China and help it obtain more government funding. At the same time, Imperial College is also raising funds for the construction of a new campus, but it did not disclose the total amount of funds required.