Xu Jingkun, the first Chinese Paralympic navigator to complete the circumnavigation of the globe in a catamaran, visited, along with his wife, the Confucius Institute of Lisbon on October 6th. During the visit, a session was organized in which dialogue with students and IC staff.
Due to an accident at age 12, Xu Jingkun lost his left forearm. After that event, he joined the first sailing team for disabled athletes in China. In 2008, at just 19 years old, he participated in the Beijing Paralympic Sailing Commission as a member of the national team. In 2015, he participated in a transatlantic solo regatta, being the second Chinese to conclude the international event after Guo Chuan.
In 2017, Xu officially started his trip around the world.
João Barreiros, the Portuguese director of the Confucius Institute, stressed the importance of this type of cultural exchange for both countries. The guest in question has a special relationship with the history of Portugal and its connection to the sea, sea sports and nautical activities.
Wang Jincheng, Chinese director of the Confucius Institute, said that the University of Lisbon has already established a cooperative relationship with the Beijing Institute of Physical Education and the Hainan Provincial Government. In the future, China and Portugal should exchange professionals and resources in the sector.
Xu Jingkun also invited students to visit his vessel, teaching some navigation techniques.