Sun, Jan 09, 2011 - Page 3 News List

EU diplomat set to conclude posting to Taiwan this month

Staff Writer, with CNA

Head of the European Economic and Trade Office Guy Ledoux will complete his four-year term by the end of the month and then head to the Philippines, Ledoux confirmed in an interview with the Central News Agency on Friday.

Ledoux, who assumed his post in Taiwan in March 2007, said the recent agreement to provide visa exemptions for Republic of China (ROC) passport holders to Schengen Area countries and others on its periphery was among the major achievements in the development of EU-Taiwan relations during the past four years and was probably the one thing that most people will remember.

However, a number of other achievements were also worth mentioning, he said.

“The EU has been more proactive in terms of expressing its views on cross-strait relations and Taiwan in recent years,” he said, adding that the bloc’s goal is to have a common foreign policy to express its view on various issues in the international arena.

For example, the EU has issued statements on the signing of the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) between Taiwan and China, the visa-waiver policy and Taiwan’s elections, he said.

On the economic and trade front, the EU and Taiwan have nearly resolved a major trade dispute on compulsory licensing, Ledoux said, adding that he also expected Taiwan’s accession to the Government Procurement Agreement to be beneficial to both sides.

Another major step forward was the opening in 2009 of an EU Center to promote awareness of the economic and political union of the 27 European countries, Ledoux said.

The EU also extended a helping hand to victims of Typhoon Morakot including supplies provided by Sweden and Poland, he added.

The diplomat said he was appointed to be the EU’s representative to Manila in September last year by the EU’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton, but the posting was not confirmed until the Philippines granted an accreditation late last month.

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