US House of Representatives committees on Tuesday passed bills in support of Taiwan, including one that would require the US Department of State to make periodic reviews of ties with Taiwan to ensure that any changes in US policy toward Taiwan would help the relationship.
The House Financial Services Committee passed the Taiwan Conflict Deterrence Act, the PROTECT Taiwan Act and the Taiwan Non-Discrimination Act, while the House Foreign Affairs Committee passed the Taiwan Assurance Implementation Act, which makes the demand of the state department.
All of the bills were passed unanimously.
In a statement on Friday last week to introduce the Taiwan Assurance Implementation Act, US Representative Ann Wagner, vice chair of the Financial Services Committee, said that a decision by the administration of US President Joe Biden to reimpose restrictions on “self-imposed guidelines” governing interactions between Taiwanese and US officials “only emboldens China’s Communist Party and weakens US support for our ally Taiwan.”
“When [the US] Congress passed the Taiwan Assurance Act in 2020, we were crystal clear that the United States needed to eliminate these outdated and unnecessary restrictions on US-Taiwan engagement,” Wagner said.
The Taiwan Non-Discrimination Act would instruct the US governor of the IMF to advocate for Taiwan’s membership in the UN agency, and push the global lender to offer Taiwan technical assistance and training, and provide Taiwanese with equal employment opportunities.
Photo: Chiang Ying-ying, AP
US Representative Young Kim, the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on the Indo-Pacific chairwoman who sponsored the bill on non-discrimination, said: “Taiwan is one of the world’s most astonishing economic growth stories, so why wouldn’t we want its experiences to inform the work of the IMF?”
“We cannot let the People’s Republic of China [PRC] exploit countries in need and take advantage of international treaties and organizations,” said Kim, who also sponsored the People’s Republic of China is not a Developing Country Act, which was also passed.
US Representative Michael McCaul, chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said: “Make no mistake, China is not a developing country, despite the People’s Republic of China’s claims... I strongly urge the international community to terminate the PRC’s ‘developing country’ status and work with partners to do the same.”
The Taiwan Conflict Deterrence Act would require the US president to publish the financial assets of top Chinese leaders, and cut them and their family members off from financial services if China were to harm US interests because of a threat it makes regarding Taiwan.
The PROTECT Taiwan Act would direct the White House to push for the exclusion of China from international organizations, including the G20 and the Bank of International Settlements in the event of “any threat to the security or the social or economic system” of the people of Taiwan.
The finance committee also passed a resolution to demand that Beijing release Mark Swidan, a US citizen and businessman who has been detained in China since 2012.
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