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​Taiwan and US held virtual forum on expanding Taiwan’s international participation; MOFA thanks US for staunch support
April 3, 2020
No.085
 
A virtual forum on increasing Taiwan's participation in the international arena was convened March 31 between the R.O.C. (Taiwan) Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA), Ministry of Health and Welfare (MOHW), and Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the United States (TECRO) and the US Department of State, Washington Headquarters of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) and AIT Taipei Office. Both sides commended the recently established Taiwan-US partnership against COVID-19 and further discussed related issues, including ongoing efforts to reinstate Taiwan's observer status in the World Health Assembly (WHA).  MOFA is grateful to the US for its staunch, longstanding support of expanding Taiwan's international participation so as to enable Taiwan to make further global contributions.
 
During the forum, Taiwan shared various measures the government had implemented to contain the COVID-19 outbreak and emphasized that this global pandemic underscores how imperative and urgent it is for Taiwan to fully take part in World Health Organization (WHO) meetings, mechanisms, and activities. Discussions also centered upon how to further cooperation between Taiwan and like-minded nations to expand Taiwan's participation in world affairs.
 
MOFA expresses gratitude to the US administration and Congress for continued and concrete support of Taiwan's participation in such international organizations as WHO. Recent measures include the Taiwan Allies International Protection and Enhancement Initiative (TAIPEI) Act of 2019, passed by Congress and signed by President Trump on March 26, 2020. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo also publicly stated that the Department of State would “fully comply” with the TAIPEI Act and do its best to assist Taiwan in securing an appropriate role in WHO. And the US Mission to the United Nations in Geneva thanked Taiwan on Twitter for playing such an important role in the international response to COVID-19, stressing that Taiwan should be invited to WHO and the WHA.
 
Deputy Foreign Minister Kelly Wu-Chiao Hsieh and Taiwan's Representative to the United States Stanley Kao participated in the virtual forum, along with their teams in Taipei and Washington, D.C. Senior US officials who joined the virtual forum included AIT Washington Office Managing Director John J. Norris Jr., AIT/Taipei Director Brent Christensen, Acting Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs Pam Pryor, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs Nerissa J. Cook, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Ambassador Atul Keshap, and Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Jonathan Fritz. This virtual forum was of great importance to both sides and served as a testament to the unwavering friendship between Taiwan and the US. Taiwan will continue to collaborate with the US and other like-minded nations to expand its international participation and provide assistance in various areas to fulfill our commitment to the world: Taiwan can help, and Taiwan is helping. (E)