Lithuanian Minister of the Economy and Innovation Ausrine Armonaite hopes to open a trade office in Taiwan this year, German broadcaster Deutsche Welle reported yesterday.
Armonaite said that opening representative offices in new markets is part of her mission as minister, because Lithuania is an export-driven economy, Deutsche Welle reported.
A shortage of microchips in Lithuania and other European countries is another reason for the need to establish a closer trade relationship with Taiwan, a key manufacturer of semiconductors, the report said.
Photo: Lu Yi-hsuan, Taipei Times
Establishing a trade office in Taiwan — which she hoped would happen in October or November — is not solely about trade, it also reflects the friendship that Taiwan and Lithuania established in the early 1990s, the report said.
Taiwan supported Lithuania and other Baltic states in their transition to liberal democracies and market economies, the report cited her as saying, adding that she thanked Taiwan for donating 100,000 masks to Lithuania at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.
On issues relating to China, Armonaite told Deutsche Welle that it is important to pay attention to what is happening in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Tibet and other places.
“Some of the news that reaches us doesn’t go in line with human rights approaches,” she said. “This is something we can’t ignore and that’s why we are trying to build more economic relations with a diverse range of countries and regions.”
The proposal to open a trade office in Taiwan was reported by Lithuanian media in March.
Lithuanian media reports have said recently that its parliament is amending laws to allow the establishment of trade missions in countries with which Lithuania has no diplomatic ties.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Joanne Ou (歐江安) said that the ministry welcomes Lithuania’s intention to expand cooperation with Taiwan, including its plan to set up a trade office in Taiwan and to amend laws to pave the way for that to happen.
Ou thanked Lithuania for its pledge on June 22 to donate 20,000 AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine doses to Taiwan.
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