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SVG, Taiwan closer – Cheng

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Closer and stronger – this is the forecast for the relationship between Taiwan and St Vincent and the Grenadines, according to Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves and Taiwanese Ambassador to this country Jack Cheng.{{more}}

On March 22nd, Taiwan will have its fourth presidential elections and while the pundits have painted a dull picture for President Chen Shui Bian, both Dr Gonsalves and Ambassador Cheng say that the outcome of the elections will not negatively affect the diplomatic relations between the two countries.

“No matter which party wins the election, Taiwan will continue to strengthen the close relations with St Vincent and the Grenadines,” Ambassador Cheng said.

Ambassador Cheng was at the time handing over a cheque of EC $2.5 million to Dr Gonsalves, which is part of an annual Social and Economic development fund, which is separate from funds allocated to the various projects that Taiwan is assisting this Government with.

The money, Dr Gonsalves announced, will be used to finance the Youth Empowerment Service (YES), Learning Resource Centres, as well as for the construction of the Cumberland Playing Field, a pet project of Minister of Telecommunications, Jerrol Thompson.

Ambassador Cheng also noted that just as Taiwan is committed to its relationship with St Vincent and the Grenadines; it is also committed to fighting for its rights as a free, democratic, and independent country.

“Taiwan will continue to exercise effective jurisdiction over its own territory. As a sovereign state, Taiwan will continue to seek participation in the United Nations, the World Health Organization, and other international organizations,” Ambassador Cheng said.

As he also expressed his solidarity with Taiwan’s quest for international recognition, Dr Gonsalves also expressed his confidence in the Taiwanese political system saying that Taiwan is a democracy with a developed legal system.

Dr Gonsalves said that he plans to visit Taiwan as soon as a new president is sworn in following the elections.(KJ)

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