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President Tsai calls for bilateral investment deal with the UK

Focus Taiwan - 9 November 2022

President Tsai calls for bilateral investment deal with the UK

Taiwan hopes it can work with the United Kingdom on signing a bilateral investment deal, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) told a visiting British minister in a meeting in Taipei on Wednesday.

"Our goal is to strengthen mutually beneficial economic and trade exchange," Tsai said while meeting with British Minister of State for Trade Policy Greg Hands, who arrived in Taiwan on Tuesday for a two-day visit.

"We hope that our countries can work together towards signing a bilateral investment agreement (BIA)," she added.

The Tsai administration has expressed an interest in signing an investment deal with the U.K. in the hope of promoting mutual trade and investment.

In a meeting in January 2021, Tsai told John Dennis, the British representative to Taiwan, that she "very much look[s] forward to Taiwan and the U.K. being able to commence dialogue on a free trade or bilateral investment agreement."

Tsai said at Wednesday’s meeting that Taiwan and the U.K. had deepened partnerships in areas such as technology, energy, business, and trade over the past few years.

In the face of many challenges in the post-pandemic era, Taiwan looks forward to working with the U.K. and other democratic nations to build more resilient global supply chains through technological cooperation and mutual investments, as well as financial support, Tsai said.

At the same time, she went on, Taiwan is "willing to use its competitive advantages in advanced semiconductor manufacturing to assist the world in optimizing semiconductor supply chain reconfiguration."

Meanwhile, Hands said the U.K. was looking to strengthen cooperation with Taiwan in various fields, without commenting on the issue of the BIA.

According to the minister, who is visiting Taiwan to co-host the 25th edition of U.K.-Taiwan Trade Talks, also on Wednesday, there are two areas in which the U.K. seeks to continue working with Taiwan, which are transitioning to green energy and promoting English education.

The U.K. plays a leading role in Europe when it comes to offshore wind capacity, Hands said, adding that his country was looking to further support Taiwan as the island develops its own offshore wind industry.

At the same time, Hands said, the U.K. will continue to be in talks with Taiwan’s authorities to help it achieve its "Bilingual 2030" policy.

The Tsai administration introduced the "Bilingual 2030" policy in 2017 with the goal of making Taiwan a more bilingual nation by 2030.

The annual U.K.-Taiwan Trade Talks, co-hosted this year by Hands and Taiwan’s Deputy Economics Minister Chen Chern-Chyi (陳正祺), allow both sides to discuss possible ways to eliminate trade barriers and increase the U.K.’s exports and investment in Taiwan, according to a statement issued by Hands.

(By Wen Kuei-hsiang and Teng Pei-ju)

 source: Focus Taiwan