Region:
Asia
Category:
Politics

Washington should invite Taiwan president for a visit: U.S. senator

  • Washington should invite Taiwan president for a visit: U.S. senator
    President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) & U.S. Republican Senator Pat Toomey Washington should invite Taiwan president for a visit: U.S. senator
Region:
Asia
Category:
Politics
Publication date:
Print article

In a virtual forum titled "U.S.-Taiwan Partnership in Challenging Times," U.S. Republican Senator Pat Toomey said it is important to deepen the U.S.' relations with Taiwan.

An American senator on Wednesday urged Washington to deepen its ties with Taipei through actions such as inviting Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) for a visit and signing a bilateral trade deal.

In a virtual forum titled "U.S.-Taiwan Partnership in Challenging Times," U.S. Republican Senator Pat Toomey said it is important to deepen the U.S.' relations with Taiwan.

"Taiwan is a democratic market-based economy, a free society, literally on the doorstep of the Chinese Communist Party, dedicated to destroying those principles," Toomey said at the forum that was hosted by U.S. think tank the Heritage Foundation.

He suggested a number of ways in which the U.S. can step up its support of Taiwan on several fronts.

"I think Washington should also formally host Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen," Toomey said.

Although Tsai has made several stopovers in the U.S. en route to other countries in her capacity as president, she has not visited the U.S. officially since she took office, due to Washington's diplomatic relations with Beijing, which sees Taiwan as part of its territory.

On the security front, Toomey said, the U.S. should continue its weapon sales to Taiwan to bolster the island's asymmetric defensive capabilities, include Taiwan in the U.S.' military exercises with its allies, and upgrade the status of the American defense attache in Taipei to the rank of general.

He also suggested that the U.S. do more to enhance its economic ties with Taiwan.

"I intend to introduce this week a Senate resolution in support of the U.S.-Taiwan Free Trade Agreement," he said, commending Taiwan for its controversial decision to open its market to American pork containing residues of the livestock drug ractopamine.

Toomey also said he plans to push the new U.S. administration to move in the direction of a comprehensive bilateral free trade agreement with Taiwan that will include the manufacturing, service, technology and agriculture sectors.

Meanwhile, at a regular press briefing in Taipei on Thursday, Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) spokesperson Joanne Ou (歐江安) expressed thanks for Toomey's support of Taiwan but said there were no arrangements at the moment for Tsai to visit the U.S.

Ou said it is a common goal of the U.S. and Taiwan to strengthen bilateral exchanges on all levels and they will continue to deepen their partnership pragmatically.

On the free trade agreement issue, Ou said the Taiwan government will continue to advance economic policies that will help connect Taiwan to the world and gain momentum for a bilateral trade deal with the U.S.