Sat, Oct 26, 2019 - Page 3 News List

President Tsai meets with Marshall Islands leader

Staff writer, with CNA

President Tsai Ing-wen, second right, Marshall Islands President Hilda Heine, second left, Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Wu, right, and Marshall Islands Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade John Silk toast the signing of a bilateral agreement at the Presidential Office in Taipei yesterday.

Photo: CNA

President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) met with Marshall Islands President Hilda Heine yesterday and witnessed the signing of a bilateral economic cooperation agreement.

The Marshall Islands is one of Taiwan’s 15 diplomatic allies and one of four in the Pacific.

Arriving in Taiwan on Thursday, Heine is leading a delegation on a four-day visit.

The agreement includes “economic cooperation in fields such as trade, the service industry, investment, technology, personnel exchanges and tourism,” the Presidential Office said, adding that the nations would establish a joint committee to promote the deal’s management and implementation.

Tsai expressed the hope that “the agreement will foster even stronger economic and trade cooperation between the two countries, and elevate the bilateral partnership to greater heights.”

Tsai thanked the Marshall Islands parliament for adopting a resolution last month that expressed support for diplomatic ties between the two countries.

She thanked Marshall Islands Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade John Silk for speaking up for Taiwan at the General Debate of the UN General Assembly and backing Taiwan’s meaningful participation at UN agencies, and congratulated the ally on its election as a member of the UN Human Rights Council.

Heine said that “as a staunch supporter and partner of the Republic of China (Taiwan), the Marshall Islands’ membership in the Human Rights Council will give us an even louder voice to speak up for Taiwan and speak out against the authoritarian forces that aim to dismantle democratic values and systems, and disrupt peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region and the world.”

The bond between the two nations “is an unbreakable one, built on our common Austronesian heritage and respect for democracy, and our steadfast commitment to upholding the regional status quo and defending freedom, justice and the rule of law,” she said.

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