President Tsai Ing-wen addressed July 18 a joint session of the St. Lucia Parliament, reaffirming Taiwan’s commitment to bolstering ties with the Caribbean ally.
The Journey of Freedom, Democracy, Sustainability state visit underscores the shared values between the countries and spotlights how Taiwan Can Help achieve the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals, Tsai said.
According to the president, many bilateral projects undertaken over the past decade embody the spirit of the SDGs. These include initiatives to boost public health and well-being, foster talent cultivation through scholarship programs and vocational training, promote sustainable agriculture and strengthen infrastructure development, she added.
Expressing thanks for St. Lucia’s staunch support for the country’s international participation, Tsai said that Taiwan will continue partnering with the Caribbean nation in expanding its contributions to global development.
The previous evening, Tsai attended a state banquet hosted in her honor by Governor-General Emmanuel Neville Cenac. Speaking at the event, the president said Taiwan is committed to working with St. Lucia in the spirit of mutual assistance for mutual benefits to create a sustainable future for both countries.
Prior to addressing the Parliament, Tsai was joined by Prime Minister Allen M. Chastanet in greeting well-wishers on the streets of the capital, Castries. She also held discussions with House Speaker Andy Glen Daniel and Senate President Jeannine Michele Giraudy-McIntyre.
After the speech, Tsai launched the second phase of the Government Island-wide Network. Co-developed by Taipei City-based International Cooperation and Development Fund (TaiwanICDF), the wireless network provides free or low-cost public internet access, and is expected to turn the digital divide into digital opportunities and spur the online economy.
Other highlights of Tsai’s second day in St. Lucia include a luncheon hosted by Daniel and Giraudy-McIntyre, the inauguration of the Gros Islet Human Resource Development Center, and a meeting with Taiwan technical mission and embassy staffers and their family members.
The trip is Tsai’s first to the region as head of state and seventh abroad since assuming office in May 2016. Before her stay in St. Lucia, she visited Haiti, St. Kitts and Nevis, and St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
Accompanying officials include Minister of Foreign Affairs Jaushieh Joseph Wu, National Security Council Secretary-General David Tawei Lee and Secretary-General to the President Chen Chu.
Tsai and her delegation are set to depart St. Lucia July 19 and stopover in the U.S. city of Denver before returning July 22 to Taiwan. (SFC-E)
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