Nicol Yong Jia Jia, a teenager from Malaysia, has won the Belt and Road Youth English Speaking Competition and the China Daily ‘21st Century Cup’ International English Speaking Competition held in eastern China last weekend.
The event, which was held in Hangzhou, the capital of Zhejiang province, China was organized by the state-run media China Daily, Hangzhou Municipal Government and the English-Speaking Union (ESU).
Its aim is to “help youths from diversified backgrounds gain a deeper understanding of each other’s countries and cultures through language and cultural exchanges,” according to China Daily.
The contest attracted 31 students from 30 different countries, where they were challenged to prepare speeches surrounding the themes of “Let Us Be True to One Another” and “The Great Truth is Simple,” with the goal of inspiring them to share their “points of view on a shared future and promote communication through competitions and exchanges in response to the Belt and Road Initiative proposed by Chinese President Xi Jinping in 2013,” the report noted.
Nicol Yong Jia Jia from Malaysia took home first place at the competition’s final, which was held at the Hangzhou International Expo Center on Sunday, while Chen Qiyu from China was crowned the second place winner.
The “21st Century Cup” National English Speaking Competition was initiated by the China Daily 21st Century English Education Media in 1996. During the competition’s early years, most contestants were kindergarteners, but over time, it has expanded to incorporate college students. This year’s contest marks the first-ever in its history to feature an international category.
Images via China Daily