December 21, 2016
The Republic of China has terminated diplomatic relations with the Democratic Republic of São Tomé and Príncipe with immediate effect Dec. 21, in order to uphold the dignity of the nation. The ROC will close its embassy in São Tomé and Príncipe, recall its technical mission, and end all bilateral cooperation projects. The ROC government deeply regrets São Tomé and Príncipe’s decision to sever diplomatic relations with the ROC.
Since diplomatic relations were established in May 1997, the ROC has actively assisted São Tomé and Príncipe in advancing its national development, with bilateral cooperation covering such areas as public health, agriculture, infrastructure, energy, and education. In particular, a team of ROC malaria prevention advisors stationed in São Tomé and Príncipe helped reduce the incidence of malaria in São Tomé and Príncipe from 50 percent in 2003 to 1.01 percent in 2015. The World Health Organization announced in 2013 that São Tomé and Príncipe had reached the pre-elimination stage for malaria, a widely recognized achievement.
In its diplomatic relations the ROC has consistently maintained the principles of integrity and mutual benefit, contributing to its allies’ development to the full extent of its abilities. The government of São Tomé and Príncipe, however, with excessive financial difficulties, and demands beyond those the ROC could meet, has ignored 20 years of friendly diplomatic relations, playing both sides of the Taiwan Strait while holding out for the highest bidder. The ROC regrets the São Tomé and Príncipe government’s abrupt and unfriendly decision, and condemns this action.
The ROC government will not allow this event to affect its efforts to expand its participation in international affairs through steadfast diplomacy. It will continue to contribute actively to the global community and work together with the nations of the world to reinforce the international status of the ROC, enhance the welfare of its people, and advance the values of freedom and equality. (E)