Australia is committed to working with Taiwan and other Indo-Pacific partners to safeguard regional peace and stability as it serves the common interests of the people of Australia and Taiwan, Australian lawmaker Josh Wilson said yesterday.
Wilson and Australian lawmaker Paul Fletcher are leading a delegation of cross-party Australian lawmakers to Taiwan for a visit until tomorrow.
During a meeting with President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) at the Presidential Office in Taipei yesterday, Wilson said that Australians and Taiwanese hope for a peaceful, stable, environmentally sustainable and prosperous Indo-Pacific region.
Photo: Presidential Office via AP
Working together with regional partners to build an open and inclusive Indo-Pacific region based on respectful and collaborative participation in the rules-based order is “both sensible and right,” he said.
It is also the only way to successfully tackle common challenges such as climate change, he added.
Wilson said that he believes relations between the two sides would become even stronger, especially in areas such as clean energy transition, critical minerals, education and tourism.
Wilson commended Tsai for her contributions to democracy and governance in Taiwan, and to good governance in the region through her “sustained and progressive leadership.”
Fletcher said that with the two major parties in Australia both represented, the delegation hoped to “further the warm relationship between Australia and Taiwan.”
It is Australia’s hope that it can maintain close contact with Taiwan, as it is an important economic partner and “a valued democracy” in the Indo-Pacific region, he said.
Overseas Taiwanese in his constituency recently held an event to celebrate new progress in relations between Taiwan and Australia — imports of Taiwanese pineapples, which he very much enjoyed, Fletcher said.
Tsai thanked the delegation for demonstrating Australia’s cross-party support for Taiwan, adding that the Australian parliament has long been a key force in advancing Taiwan-Australia relations.
She also extended her gratitude to Australia for underlining the importance of peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait and supporting Taiwan’s international participation.
Taiwan has become Australia’s fifth-largest trading partner and fourth-largest export market thanks to joint efforts by both sides, the president said.
Taiwan looks forward to continuing to bolster economic cooperation with Australia, which is the nation’s largest energy provider and a major source of agricultural goods, she added.
Tsai also called on the Australian government and parliament to support Taiwan’s bid to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) to promote economic growth and sustainable development in the region.
Later yesterday, the delegation met with Legislative Speaker You Si-kun (游錫堃), who also called for its support for Taiwan’s bid to join the CPTPP.
Taiwan plays an important role in restructuring global supply chains in the post-COVID-19 pandemic era, You said, adding that the nation is “a trustworthy trading partner,” as it always abides by international trade regulations, and the principles of fairness and transparency.
Including Taiwan in the CPTPP would promote regional economic integration, enhance Taiwan’s economic resilience, and strengthen economic cooperation between Taiwan and Australia, he said.
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