By Marcus Leach

The UK and Columbia have committed to greater collaboration in higher education, science and research during a visit to the UK by President Juan Manuel Santos of Columbia.

At an education event hosted at the British Council, President Santos, Columbian Vice-Minister of National Education Javier Botero and Universities and Science Minister David Willetts witnessed the signing of five Memorandums of Understanding.

These agreements will expand the opportunities for UK and Colombian universities to work together in areas such as student and academic mobility, joint research and English and Spanish language learning.

“I’m delighted that we have strengthened our higher education and research relationship with Columbia. Both our countries recognise the vital role that science and innovation play in driving forward growth and prosperity, and these agreements will enable us to share knowledge and expertise for mutual benefit,” Minister for Universities and Science David Willetts said.

David Willetts and President Santos also took part in a science and innovation roundtable with government, academic and industry representatives from the UK and Columbia. Discussions focussed on strengthening links between the research and business communities of both countries and exploring opportunities for future collaboration.

A key outcome of the roundtable was the agreement that a UK delegation will visit Colombia next year to scope for opportunities and explore potential areas for collaboration between the two countries’ science and innovation communities.

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