Fri, Jul 14, 2017 - Page 3 News List

Cartes visits revitalization project at Kaohsiung port

Staff writer, with CNA

In cener, from left to right, Kaohsiung Mayor Chen Chu, President Tsai Ing-wen and Paraguayan President Horacio Cartes wave before boarding a yacht yesterday at Kaohsiung Harbor.

Photo: Ko You-hau, Taipei Times

Paraguayan President Horacio Cartes yesterday visited Kaohsiung Harbor for a first-hand look at an ongoing project to revitalize the area and learn more about the history of the southern port city.

Accompanied by President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文), Cartes first stopped at the Kaohsiung Exhibition Center, which is next to the harbor.

While the two presidents viewed the harbor, Tsai introduced her Paraguayan counterpart to the development of the port.

Kaohsiung Mayor Chen Chu (陳菊) gave a speech to welcome the guests, lauding the long-standing ties between Taiwan and Paraguay.

Built during the Japanese colonial era, Kaohsiung Harbor played a focal role in the development of the nation’s heavy industry in the 1970s and 1980s, Chen said.

The harbor is undergoing an industrial transformation and is seeking to integrate with the technology and tourism industries, she said.

Giving a briefing on the city’s latest revitalization project, the “New Bay Area,” Kaohsiung Deputy Mayor Shih Che (史哲) said the project covers 600 hectares and is aimed at further developing the exhibition and yacht industries.

After the briefings, Cartes and Tsai boarded a yacht to tour the harbor, accompanied by Chen.

Cartes was on his third visit to Taiwan since assuming the presidency in 2013.

He arrived on Tuesday for a three-day state visit to mark the 60th anniversary of diplomatic ties between the two nations.

He attended several events, including a painting exhibition, to mark the occasion, and to promote bilateral trade and economic exchanges, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

During talks between the two presidents on Wednesday, Tsai announced new rules allowing visa-free entry for Paraguayan citizens to Taiwan, while Cartes said his country would continue to help Taiwan take part in international organizations and activities.

The two leaders also witnessed the signing of an economic cooperation agreement and the exemption of double verification of official papers.

Taiwan and Paraguay established official ties on July 12, 1957. Paraguay is Taiwan’s only diplomatic ally in South America.

Cartes’ visit comes after Panama cut formal ties with Taiwan and established diplomatic relations with China on June 13, leaving Taipei with 20 diplomatic allies.

Panama was the second country to switch diplomatic recognition from Taipei to Beijing since Tsai took office in May last year. Sao Tome and Principe was the first.

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