The Confucius Institute program began in 2004. There are now over 500 Confucius Institutes in dozens of countries across six continents; the highest concentration of Institutes is in Europe and the United States. China’s Ministry of Education estimated in 2010 that 100 million people overseas were taking part in CI learning. At least 24 CIs in the US have been closed due to concern for academic freedom and censorship.

Designation of the Confucius Institute U.S. Center as a Foreign Mission of the PRC

KEITH KRACH, UNDER SECRETARY FOR ECONOMIC GROWTH, ENERGY AND THE ENVIRONMENT

By: MICHAEL R. POMPEO, SECRETARY OF STATE

AUGUST 13, 2020

The Trump Administration has made it a priority to seek fair and reciprocal treatment from the People’s Republic of China. For more than four decades, Beijing has enjoyed free and open access to U.S. society, while denying that same access to Americans and other foreigners in China.  Furthermore, the PRC has taken advantage of America’s openness to undertake large scale and well-funded propaganda efforts and influence operations in this country.

Today, the Department of State designated the Confucius Institute U.S. Center as a foreign mission of the PRC, recognizing CIUS for what it is:  an entity advancing Beijing’s global propaganda and malign influence campaign on U.S. campuses and K-12 classrooms.  Confucius Institutes are funded by the PRC and part of the Chinese Communist Party’s global influence and propaganda apparatus.

The goal of these actions is simple: to ensure that American educators and school administrators can make informed choices about whether these CCP-backed programs should be allowed to continue, and if so, in what fashion. Universities around the country and around the world are examining the Confucius Institutes’ curriculum and the scope of Beijing’s influence in their education systems.  The United States wants to ensure that students on U.S. campuses have access to Chinese language and cultural offerings free from the manipulation of the Chinese Communist Party and its proxies.