Hong Kong and Italian students will now be able to stay in each other’s countries after both governments teamed up last week to embrace a HK-Italy working holiday scheme bilateral agreement.
As part of the working holiday scheme, the agreement would allow students aged between 18 to 30 to apply for a visa, during which they could both work and study short-term courses.
The agreement was penned by Hong Kong Secretary for Labour and Welfare Law Chi-kwong and Italy’s undersecretary of state in the foreign ministry Manlio Di Stefano at Hong Kong’s government headquarters in Admiralty on Friday.
Each government has set a quota of 500 visiting students per year.
HK-Italy working holiday scheme to reinforce bilateral ties
“The agreement will enable young people in Hong Kong and Italy to broaden their horizons and gain experience in a foreign culture, as well as further reinforce our bilateral ties,” Law said.
For his part, Mr Manlio Di Stefano said: “We are glad to provide the Italian youth with this new and unique opportunity to experience living, studying and working in Hong Kong.”
“We hope young people from Hong Kong will take advantage of the scheme to enjoy Italy as well,” Mr Di Stefano added.
Italy 13th country to adopt scheme with HK
Italy would be the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region’s 13th partner country to adopt such a working holdiay scheme initiative.
This follows similar bilateral agreements which were earlier inked with New Zealand, Australia, Ireland, Germany, Japan, Canada, South Korea, France, Britain, Austria, Hungary, Sweden and the Netherlands.
Details of the visa application will be available on Italy’s consulate general website.
Since the initiative was launched, it was reported that about 90,000 Hong Kong residents have already supported and joined the scheme.
Photo credit: The Government of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region
Angelica is a reporter for Global Education Times with a focus on the ‘business of education’, and on Asia-Pacific and South American education affairs. An experienced journalist, Angelica also writes for the oldest English newspaper in the Philippines, The Manila Times, as the publication’s business correspondent.
You can reach her at: firstname.lastname@example.org | Or connect via social media on: Twitter – https://twitter.com/aiballesteros_