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Match Asia warning

A leading international banker has warned that Britain must raise its education standards to compete directly with other countries around the world to ensure a fulfilling and secure future for school- leavers.

John Bond, chief executive of HSBC Holdings, which owns Midland Bank and the Hongkong and Shanghai Bank, said it was estimated that Asian economies excluding Japan would exceed those of the European Union, the United States, Canada and Mexico combined, by 2010 with virtually no natural resources to call upon. The root cause lay in the Asian approach to education, he said. "In a competitive world, Asian governments regard it as a paramount duty to encourage, sponsor and help fund education and training for the benefit of all," he told a meeting organised by the Association of Teachers and Lecturers.

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