China News Agency, Taiwan
PRESIDENT HOPES TO SIGN FTA WITH GUATEMALA IN AUGUST
By Lilian Wu
20 June 2005
Taipei (CNA) President Chen Shui-bian said Monday that Guatemalan President Ocar Berger Perdomo has agreed to visit Taiwan in August and that he hopes to sign a Taiwan-Guatemala free trade agreement (FTA) with him by that time. The president made the remarks when he received Jorge Mendez Herbruger, president of the Guatemalan Congress, at the Presidential Office.
Chen said he invited Berger recently for a visit, and the latter agreed to take part in the inauguration of the Democratic Pacific Union initiated by Vice President Annette Lu in mid-August and deliver a keynote speech at the event.
Chen said Taiwan and Guatemala have close trade and economic relations, that FTA talks are progressing smoothly and that he is confident the two sides can sign the agreement during Berger’s visit. He expressed appreciation that the Guatemalan Congress has since 1991 had a group friendly to Taiwan and that it has passed resolutions every year to support Taiwan’s bid to join the United Nations. Chen said he was also gratified to see that the legislatures of the two countries have set up Web sites to provide a platform for bilateral exchanges.