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Singapore to Introduce Vietnamese Language to School Curriculum

Singapore's Ministry of Education (MoE) will introduce Vietnamese and Thai studies alongside increased attention to Malay and Chinese.

In a press release issued last week, the MoE released plans to refresh curriculum in response to "an increasingly complex, interconnected and tech-driven world." Students aged 12–18 will be provided "age-appropriate digital resources" to learn Vietnamese along with a number of other initiatives to increase digital competencies and a focus on the history, geography, culture and economies of ASEAN countries.

VnExpress notes that the new curriculum will facilitate study-abroad trips with important pre-departure preparations. The newspaper cites Vo Thi Thanh Binh, director of the Saigon-based Vietnamese Language Studies, as noticing more and more foreign students coming to study the language for work and research purposes. 

The announced plans coincide with Singapore's aim to strengthen its multi-faceted relationship with Vietnam. Singapore’s foreign minister, Vivian Balakrishnan, invited a delegation from the Vietnamese government to discuss the importance of their partnership on a variety of issues including regional and global politics, the East Sea, security and national defense, the economy and trade, anti-corruption initiatives as well as legal frameworks and crime prevention. 

With Vietnam's economy predicted to surpass that of Singapore's by 2029, the Southeast Asian city-state seems to be taking deeper interest in Vietnam, including cultural showcases, inviting Vietnamese artists to display their works and embracing Vietnamese cuisine. Singaporean culture is alive and well in Vietnam as well, as exemplified by Singaporean restaurants and events such as a recent film festival focusing on works from the country.

[Photo via Straits Express]