Taiwan and South Africa have had close relations in trade and investment. The bilateral trade amounts to around USD$ 1.8 billion per year. Mr.Musawenkosi Aphane, the head of mission of the Liaison Office of South Africa in Taipei said Taiwanese companies in South Africa employ around 45,000 South Africans and most companies engage in manufacturing and service industries. Bank of Taiwan, established in in 1992 in South Africa, has a full banking license in Johannesburg, thus allowing Taiwanese businesspeople to have more efficient and speedy banking service between Taiwan and South Africa. The South African representative said he hopes Bank of Taiwan will open more branches in his country citing the example that Investec and FNB (First National Bank) of South Africa have deals with banks in Taiwan and the financial transaction has exceeded USD$400 million.
Palau is an island country located in the western Pacific Ocean and has become a popular tourist destination for Taiwanese in recent years. Palau is famous for its pristine white sand beach with crystal clear waters and picturesque nature. Rock Islands in Palau’s Southern Lagoon has been inscribed on the World Heritage List and it has around 400 mushroom-shaped limestone islands surrounded by coral reefs. Taiwan’s China Airlines has direct from Taipei to Koror, Palau.
Beijing in late November last year issued a ban on Chinese tourist groups visiting Palau, which some call it a measure to punish Palau for its relationship with Taiwan. But Ambassador Dilmei Louisa Olkeriil, the ambassador of Palau said she did not understand why that piece of news was widely reported in Taiwan as she mentioned that a couple of years ago, Palau also restricted the number of Chinese tourists to Palau as the government of Palau does not wish to see the environment being threatened as too much human activity will increase pollutants. Palau began the fight to protect the environment in 2015 and a new initiative has been taken by Palau to protect the environment, that is “passport pledge” that visitors must sign before entering Palau.More
In July 2017, Palau Ministry of Health and Taiwan’s Eda Hospital/I-Shou University signed an MOU in support of a joint medical internship program that allows students from Palau who are going to graduate from I-Shou University to complete internships at Belau National University in Palau. Ambassador Dilmei Louisa Olkeriil, the ambassador of Palau said Taiwan has sent medical teams to Palau as well. Palau has had close cooperation with some hospitals in Taiwan including ShinKong Memorial Hospital and Taiwan Adventist Hospital in Taipei and Eda Hospital in Kaohsiung, the south of Taiwan.
Ambassador Dilmei Louisa Olkeriil said she hopes in the future, more doctors from Palau will be able to practice in Taiwan as Taiwan gets more and more patients from Palau now. 95% of the people of Palau who need medical transfer would now choose Taiwan instead of the Philippines as the medical cost in Taiwan is lower and that Taiwan has excellent medical services. Taiwanese hospitals have become Palauan’s first choice of referral just by word of mouth. And to provide assistance, the government of Palau has two medical referral coordinators posted in Taiwan to help patients with visa, dependents’ accommodation, translation and other related services.More
Palau is an island country located in the western Pacific Ocean and has had diplomatic ties with Taiwan since 1999. Taiwan Technical Mission has been posted in Palau more than 30 years even long before the establishment of the diplomatic relations. Taiwan Technical Mission has helped the farmers in Palau develop some fruits and vegetables. Ambassador Dilmei Louisa Olkeriil, the ambassador of Palau said now farmers form Palau-Taiwan Farmers’ Association, an organization dedicated to promoting the livelihoods of the farmers with the aim to reduce dependence on food imports.
Even though Palau has not been that much affected by the climate change, some of the low-lying islands have suffered flood as waters have risen in some islands where they have to build seawalls. Palau is made up of around 340 small islands. Ambassador Dilmei Louisa Olkeriil said the government has been developing green energy and researching the potential of wind energy, ocean thermal energy conversion, wave energy and energy storage technologies. Taiwan has helped build solar power panels.
Malaysia’s Head of Mission in Taiwan, Datuk Adeline Leong said she hopes to bring Taiwan and Malaysia together by getting more friendship pacts signed between cities in both Taiwan and Malaysia. Another important task is that she said the government can do so much but other NGOs such as Rotary Club, Lions Club, etc. can do their part citing the example that members of two Rotary sister-clubs of Taiwan and Malaysia have visited each other for the last 27 years.
To tap potential-laden Muslim markets, Taiwan has recently aimed to create a halal industry and Taiwan Halal Center was established in April 2017 by TAITRA (Taiwan External Trade Development Council). Datuk Adeline Leong said Malaysia tops the world’s largest producer and exporter of multi-billion dollar halal food products. Taiwan can learn from Malaysia in the area the certification of halal food and products.
Malaysia’s Head of Mission in Taiwan, Datuk Adeline Leong said more than 1700 Taiwanese entrepreneurs invest in Malaysia and Malaysia also has investment in Taiwan, for example Phison Electronics Corp., a multi-million dollar company in Hsinchu, northern Taiwan that employs 700 engineers with master’s degrees and 70 of them are Malaysian. All Cosmos Biotech is a Malaysian company manufacturing bio-organic and bio-chemical fertilizers in Malaysia was officially listed on the stock exchange in Taiwan in June of 2017.
In the area of education, in the last decade, the number of Malaysian students studying in Taiwan has grown four times from around 4,000 students 10 years ago to 16,000 today. Datuk Adeline Leong said it dates back to the 70s when Chinese Malaysian students started to study in Taiwan and now the Federation of Alumni Association of Taiwan Universities in Malaysia has 60 thousand members and every year professors from Taiwan visit Malaysia to see their students.
The Malaysian representative in Taiwan (Head of Mission in Taiwan), Datuk Adeline Leong said that 2017 was a good year and her office had achieved many goals because of Taiwan’s New Southbound Policy. She said the Policy has helped improve the relationship between countries in the south of Taiwan and Taiwan itself. Taiwan’s New Southbound Policy has not only helped achieve targets in trade, investment and education but the scope has expanded to the fields of agriculture, biotechnology, medicine, ICT and smart city.
Datuk Adeline Leong said Taiwan is Malaysia’s sixth largest trading partner and the total trade amounted to USD$15 billion. Taiwanese tourist arrivals to Malaysia have increased by 21.6% with around 300 thousand Taiwanese visitors and the number of Malaysia’s tourists to Taiwan has increased by 9.9% with around 450,000 Malaysians visiting Taiwan.
On today’s show, I will revisit some of my favorite interviews from the past 12 months in 2017. We first start with an interview with Victoria Hsu, the president of the Taiwan Alliance to Promote Civil Partnership Rights (TAPCPR) who shares with us her views on same sex marriage in Taiwan.
Other interviews include:
1. Russia representative
2. UK representative
3. India representative
4. South Africa representative
5. Brazilian representative
6. Cedric Alviani, Taipei Bureau Director of Reporters Without Borders
7. Germany representativeMore
The COP 23 meeting in Bonn,Germany concluded in November and the Ambassador of Kiribati, Ambassador Teekoa Iuta said she has talked to Kiribati delegation and they looked at the conference positively. Most countries take the issue seriously judging from the fact that Fiji, being a small country affected by climate change, was given the chair and that was a sign forward adding that big countries show support for a small country like Fiji to take leadership in the conference.
The Ambassador of Kiribati, Ambassador Teekoa Iuta added that the most important task for Kiribati is to ensure water and food security. Even without the issue of climate change, Kiribati has faced the problem of fresh water supply. But climate change makes the situation worse as it has eroded Kiribati’s land and caused salt water to penetrate into fresh water resources. Diseases such as diarrhea, cold and other health issues are prevalent and the government of Kiribati has continuously tackled this issue in order to improve the health of the people.More
Educational exchange has been an important part of the cooperation between Taiwan and Kiribati. Currently, there are more than 50 students from Kiribati studying in Taiwan, an increase from around 30 students in 2014.Kiribati students undertake various programs ranging from undergraduate, master’s and doctorate studies.
This year, among 8 students that graduated from 6 universities, one of them, Mr.Roman Korimara obtained Ph.D in Electrical Engineering, the first Kiribati student to obtain a Ph.D from Taiwan and one of the few Ph.D holders in Kiribati. Another outstanding student is Mr.Baraniko Eromanga who became the first Kiribati student to complete medical studies from Taiwan. The ambassador of Kiribati, Ambassador Teekoa Iuta said most medical students in Kiribati graduated from Fiji, New Zealand and Cuba.Taiwan’s I-shou Medical University provides post-undergraduate programs to foreign students now and it attracts more medical students from Kiribati.More
Kiribati is an island republic in the Central Pacific and the embassy of Kiribati was opened in Taipei in May 2013. Taiwan and Kiribati established diplomatic ties in 2003. The Ambassador of Kiribati Ambassador Teekoa Iuta said there are many ongoing cooperative projects between Taiwan and Kiribati. Some of the projects include humanitarian assistance, the construction of the airport runway, human resources development, short-term vocational training, clean energy, medical cooperation and education.
On the part of medical cooperation, Taiwan’s Mackay Memorial Hospital has been sending medical teams to Kiribati. The second mission Taiwan Mobile Medical Mission from Mackay Memorial Hospital completed the mission in September 2017 and it was the 23rd Taiwan Medical Mission to visit Kiribati. Taiwan has dispatched medical team to Kiribati since the establishment of the diplomatic ties. Every year, two teams are sent to Kiribati. The medical specialists provided outpatient clinics and rheumatic heart disease screening. According to Mackay Memorial Hospital, The team served 747 outpatients and 23 of them were considered as referral for overseas treatment. More and more patients from Kiribati have received treatment in Taiwan. Apart from outpatient clinics, the specialists also provide on-job training for medical staff and interns in Kiribati.More
Swedish Chamber of Commerce Taipei was founded in 2010 in Taipei and the CEO of the Swedish Chamber of Commerce Taipei, Louise Bystrom said the aim is to promote commercial and industrial relations between Taiwan and Sweden. The chamber of commerce organizes various activities including Sweden Day and this year it will take place on December 9 at the Huashan Creative Park in Taipei. This allows the public in Taiwan to understand more about Sweden and to have face to face contact with Swedish companies in Taiwan Swedish companies have strong presence in Taiwan.
Dr.Chao Chih-ping, a banana expert and the director of Taiwan Banana Research Institute said it takes 3.5 to 5 years to develop a new variety of bananas and variety improvement is one of the biggest achievements Taiwan Banana Research Institute has made. Dr.Chao Chih-ping is the Director of Taiwan Banana Research Institute. Dr.Chao obtained his PhD in plant pathology at Lousiana State University, USA and master’s degree at Illinois University studying plant pathology and In late September at Asia Agri-Tech Expo and Forum, Taiwan Banana Research Institute made worldwide debut of TaiJiao No.7 or Banana No.7 and the unique trait is that it is the first variety the institute has registered in foreign countries and the property right can be protected.More