Chinese firm launches tuition-free tourism school in Cambodian capital
PHNOM PENH, Nov. 26 (Xinhua) -- A Chinese real estate developer on Monday launched a tuition-free tourism and hospitality school here, aiming at providing high-quality education to poverty-stricken youths in Cambodia.
Not-for-profit World Youth Tourism and Hospitality School (WYTHS) would offer a one-and-a-half-year training course on hotel and hospitality as well as English and Chinese languages to Cambodian poor students, said WYTHS's principal Li Yanhui.
"We only hope to give them an opportunity to change their fate and to contribute to the development of tourism industry in Cambodia," he said during the school launching ceremony.
Students would have chances to join internships at high-end hotels, restaurants, real estate firms and travel companies, he said, adding that after graduation, qualified students would be granted jobs.
Yang Shuo, chief executive officer of Guangzhou Yuetai Group in Cambodia, said the school's purpose was to help train "professional workers" for Cambodia's tourism industry.
"We have been doing business here for seven years now, and the difficulty we face in doing business here is the lack of Cambodian professional workers, so with the school, we hope that there will be more Cambodian professional workers," he said.
"In the future, our corporation plans to lower as many as possible the number of Chinese workers or management, and at the same time, we will increase the number of Cambodian professional workers or management," he said.
According to Yang, the school would provide free education to about 100 high-school graduates this year and up to 400 students next year.
Mean Vandet, director of Cambodian Tourism Ministry's Tourism Professional Training Department, said the ministry fully supported the WYTHS, saying that it would importantly contribute to human resource development in the tourism sector.
Tourism is one of the four pillars supporting Cambodia's economy. According to a tourism report, the Southeast Asian country received 4.37 million foreign tourists during the January-September period this year, up 11.8 percent over the same period last year.
The number of Chinese tourists was 1.44 million during the first nine months of this year, up 71 percent, accounting for 32.9 percent of the total foreign visitors to the kingdom.