Postal companies in China, Hong Kong and Vietnam will not attend the PhilaTaipei World Stamp Championship Exhibition in Taipei because of stalled cross-strait relations and sovereignty disputes over islands in the South China Sea, Chunghwa Post said yesterday.
The exhibition, which is to be held from Oct. 21 to Oct. 25, is to be attended by more than 80 countries around the world.
This is the first time that Taiwan has been selected to host the international event.
Chunghwa Post said postal companies in China, Hong Kong and Vietnam were registered, but China and Hong Kong have canceled because of stalled cross-strait relations since the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) government took office on May 20.
Chunghwa Post spokesperson Wang Shu-ming (王淑敏) said that Vietnam Post lodged a protest against Chunghwa Post after the latter on May 5 published a set of stamps advocating peace in the South China Sea in a bid to defend the nation’s sovereignty over Itu Aba Island (Taiping Island, 太平島), adding that the company has no further details from the Vietnamese postal company.
Chunghwa Post chairman Philip Ong (翁文祺) said that Taiwan was awarded hosting rights of the Asian International Stamp Exhibition last year, which is considered the precursor to the World Stamp Championship Exhibition.
He said that the nation qualified to host the exhibition after securing approval from the members of Federation Internationale de Philatelie.
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