Poland’s donation of COVID-19 vaccines was sent to help Taiwan gradually reopen to the world, Polish Office in Taipei Acting Head Bartosz Rys said.
The envoy made the remarks in a written interview with the Taipei Times and its sister newspaper, the Chinese-language Liberty Times, late last month.
The Polish government on Sept. 4 announced a donation of 400,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine to Taiwan, which arrived the following day.
While Poland’s announcement came after donation announcements by Lithuania, Slovakia and the Czech Republic, Poland is the third-largest donor of COVID-19 vaccines to Taiwan after the US and Japan.
“The donation reflects our solidarity [with recipients] and intention to help those in need. We also wanted to express our gratitude [to Taiwan] for providing us in total 1 million face masks,” Rys said.
“I very much hope our donation will help Taiwan speed up the vaccination rollout. I also believe this will help Taiwan gradually relax COVID-19 curbs and open up to the world again, as more people will be protected,” he said.
“I would like to underline that Poland donated in total over 2 million vaccines to its international partners in a gesture of solidarity, including also Ukraine (650,000 doses), Vietnam (500,000), Uzbekistan (250,000) and Kenia (210,000),” Rys added.
Poland is the first EU country to sign an agreement on legal cooperation in criminal matters with Taiwan, which came into effect on Feb. 23.
“In practice, this was an important step to streamline cooperation in this regard,” Rys said, adding that the agreement enabled the office to transfer a Polish citizen from Taiwan to serve the rest of his sentence in Poland, as he had requested.
Among EU economies, Poland is the least affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, he said, adding that Poland is a great destination for Taiwanese companies wanting to relocate their manufacturing bases in Europe.
Poland has attracted many foreign investors from different industries such as the automotive, electromobility, electronics, information and communications technology, biotechnology, pharmacology and green technology sectors, he said.
“For example, we are the biggest supplier of lithium-ion car batteries or their components in Europe. Poland is also the largest exporter of electric buses in the EU,” he said.
Despite disruptions caused by the pandemic, Polish exports to Taiwan last year rose 39 percent and imports from Taiwan grew 10 percent, he said.
During the ninth bilateral economic consultations in September last year, Poland and Taiwan signed two agreements: one on supporting small and medium-sized enterprises and start-ups, and the other on cooperation between accreditation bodies.
Taiwan-Poland cooperation in science and technology is also booming, the Polish Office in Taipei said, citing as an example National Central University teaming up with Poland’s Nicolaus Copernicus University for scientific missions in the Arctic.
The two countries are also increasing cooperation in space technology. A satellite attitude control system developed by Taiwanese start-up Tensor Tech Co (張量科技) is to be deployed on a cubesat belonging to Polish start-up SatRevolution.
The launch is scheduled for Dec. 4.
LIABILITIES MULLED: New Taipei City Mayor Hou You-yi said Taipei would find out if the firm was legally registered, the guide was licensed and the weather was assessed The assets of Tian Da Local Nature Co are to be frozen after at least four people died after falling into the Beishi River (北勢溪) on an outing the company had organized on Saturday, the Taipei City Government said yesterday. Six people — two adults and four children — were washed away by a flash flood on the river in New Taipei City’s Hubaotan (虎豹潭) area. They were participating in a Nature Joy Camp outdoor activity with a group of 16 adults and 15 children led by a guide surnamed Su (蘇). As of 4:30pm yesterday, four of the missing had been
Taiwanese worked more hours than people in all but three other countries in the world last year, Ministry of Labor data showed. Singapore placed first in average hours worked among the 40 economies surveyed, with an average of 2,288 hours per worker last year, the data showed. The city-state was followed by Colombia with 2,172 hours — based on 2019 data — and Mexico with 2,124 hours, it showed. Taiwan came in fourth, with 2,021 hours, it showed. South Korean workers clocked the third-most hours in Asia, with 1,908 hours, followed by Japan with 1,598 hours, it showed. However, compared with 2019, the survey found
The US 7th Fleet yesterday confirmed that a US Navy ship transited the Taiwan Strait on Thursday and Friday. “The Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer USS Dewey [DDG 105] conducted a Taiwan Strait transit in cooperation with Royal Canadian Navy [RCN] Halifax-class frigate, HMCS Winnipeg, October 14-15, 2021,” the US 7th Fleet said in a statement. “Dewey’s and Winnipeg’s transit through the Taiwan Strait demonstrates the commitment of the United States and our allies and partners to a free and open Indo-Pacific. Cooperation like this represents the centerpiece of our approach to a secure and prosperous region,” it added. The transit marked the
‘COUNTERPRODUCTIVE’: The German, French and Singaporean missions said that Taiwan’s COVID-19 restrictions are hindering local projects and business operations Several foreign missions in Taiwan have urged the government to ease its strict COVID-19 border controls, which they say are hurting in-person exchanges and business operations. The missions made the appeal in response to media inquiries on how the border controls have affected their respective countries’ exchanges with Taiwan, amid growing concerns voiced privately by Taiwan-based foreign offices and businesses regarding the restrictions. Taiwan has maintained strict entry requirements since March last year, generally prohibiting most arrivals except for citizens and foreign residents, while it has required those who enter the country to undergo a stringent 14-day quarantine. Although the rules have been