President Tsai Ing-wen said April 16 that Taiwan is ready, willing and able to work with the U.S. and other like-minded partners in promoting a free, open and prosperous Indo-Pacific.
As the two sides mark the 40th anniversary of the Taiwan Relations Act (TRA40), the government is fully committed to partnering in the U.S. vision for a free and open Indo-Pacific in which all nations are sovereign, strong and prosperous, Tsai said. The TRA is testament to Taiwan’s strategic importance and underscores its relevance in the international community, she added.
Tsai made the remarks during the opening of the TRA40 Indo-Pacific Dialogue in Taipei City. Co-organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs with the American Institute in Taiwan, locally based Prospect Foundation and Washington-headquartered Hudson Institute, the one-day forum attracted leading security experts and scholars from home and abroad.
Other attendees included members of a TRA40 Congressional delegation headed by Paul Ryan, former speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, AIT Chairman James F. Moriarty and AIT director Brent Christensen.
According to Tsai, Taiwan and the U.S. share a mutual interest in promoting greater economic, security and trade engagement among like-minded countries in the Indo-Pacific. This cornerstone approach to boosting prosperity in the region underscores the strength of the two sides’ enduring partnership, she said.
As a trusted and valuable partner of the U.S., Taiwan is receiving a steady stream of arms sales in line with the TRA while allocating more funds to upgrading the nation’s defense industry, Tsai said. The result is Taiwan’s enhanced capability to defend freedom, democracy and rules-based order, she added.
Tsai said Taiwan and the U.S. are leaving no stone unturned in promoting human rights through expanded regional engagement, citing the recent staging of the joint inaugural regional dialogue on religious freedom and launch of the Indo-Pacific Democratic Governance Consultations.
Expanded economic cooperation is another area deserving of Taiwan-U.S. attention, Tsai said. A bilateral trade agreement is in the best interests of both sides and would serve as a model for the Indo-Pacific, she added. (SFC-E)
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