China's Ministry of Education voiced on Monday its support for the formation of C9, an academic conference comprising nine domestic prestigious universities and referred to as China's Ivy League by some experts.
Xu Mei, the ministry's spokeswoman, said the establishment of the conference is a "helpful attempt that is conducive to the country's construction of high-quality colleges, cultivation of top-notch innovative talents and enhanced cooperation and exchanges between Chinese universities and their foreign counterparts."
On Oct. 12, nine institutions of higher learning including the elite Peking University and Tsinghua Univerisity signed cooperative agreements that featured flexible student exchange programs, deepened cooperation on the training of postgraduates, and establishment of a credit system that allows students to win credits through attending classes in member universities of C9.
Other universities are Zhejiang University, Harbin Institute of Technology, Fudan University, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Nanjing University, University of Science and Technology of China, and Xi'an Jiaotong University.
The Ivy League, which comprises eight oldest and finest institutions of higher learning in the United States including Yale University and Harvard University, is known to the world for its academic excellence.