Recently there have been rumors that Saint Lucia, an eastern Caribbean nation, might sever ties with Taiwan. Reports that Saint Lucia might switch diplomatic recognition to China have circulated over the last few years, but the relations between Taiwan and Saint Lucia have remained stable. Last year, Saint Lucia signed an agreement with Desert Star Holdings, a Hong Kong-based company, for the development of the Pearl of the Caribbean, a US$2.6 billion project that will include a marina, horse track, casino, free trade zone, shopping complex and housing complex. The plan is to attract mainland Chinese tourists and investors to Saint Lucia.
In an interview with Prof.Denys Springer, former director of the Government Information Service of Saint Lucia and former research fellow of Taiwan’s Academia Sinica, he said that he and many other people from different political parties have put pressure on the current government not to establish diplomatic ties with China.
Saint Lucia first established diplomatic ties with Taiwan in 1984, but in 1997, switched recognition to China. In 2007, Taiwan and Saint Lucia resumed diplomatic ties and the relationship was further strengthened with the opening of the embassy of Saint Lucia in Taipei in June 2015, making it the first embassy in Asia.
Last year, Israel Economic and Cultural Office in Taipei donated 117 earthquake-proof tables invented by Israelis, to the city of Tainan, southern Taiwan with funds that were allocated for Israeli National Day reception. This year, Mr.Asher Yarden, the Israeli representative said his office works with a major international chain hotel and other sponsors to extend assistance to the underprivileged in Taitung, Eastern Taiwan. Mr.Asher Yarden said they visited schools and NGOs in Taitung and made donations to help them. Taiwan even though is a developed economy, Mr.Yarden said his office still hopes to provide assistance to the underprivileged groups and to give back to the society in Taiwan.
An Israeli cookbook, translated in traditional Chinese, was released in Taiwan in April and asked whether his office will get more Israeli books translated into traditional Chinese, the Israeli representative said his answer was affirmative because many readers in Taiwan are still interested in Israeli books. Next year, Israel will be the theme country of the Taipei International Book Exhibition and the Israeli representative said he will promote Israel thorough Israeli literature.
An Israeli book “Jerusalem: A Cookbook” by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi was translated into traditional Mandarin Chinese and was released in Taiwan in April. This cookbook has a collection of 120 recipes exploring the flavors of Jerusalem which is made up of Muslim, Christian and Jewish culture.
Through this cookbook, one will be able to learn to cook simple dishes known in Jerusalem, Israel.Mr.Asher Yarden, the representative of Israel Economic and Cultural Office in Taipei said he himself makes Shakshuka and tabbouleh salad quite often. Shakshuka is a dish of eggs mixed with some herbs and tomato sauce (as seen in the photo above).More
Hikmet Çetinkaya‘s Oil Painting Exhibition- Poppies of Remembrance-In Memory of the Fallen in Gallipoli opens in Taiwan to commemorate the soldiers killed in Gallipoli, Turkey. Volunteers from Australia and New Zealand provided help for the British-led army as the Allies tried to knock the German-allied Ottoman Empire out of the war in 1915. The Turks eventually drove the Allies off their land in a bloody war claiming the lives of 250,000 Turkish soldiers and more than 100,000 allied soldiers, mostly from Australia and New Zealand.
Ambassador Ismet Erikan, the Representative of the Turkish Trade Office in Taipei said Hikmet Çetinkaya is famous for poppy paintings and each poppy represents one fallen soldier. The exhibition in Taipei at Dr.Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall runs from May 5th to May 21st.
Bridge 268 is a campaign in Taiwan to collect used shoes, used sneakers, backpacks and second hand English reading books for children between 7-12 years old in Swaziland, a small country in southern Africa. The charity donation drive was organized by Ms.Zeethu Dlamini, wife of the ambassador of the Kingdom of Swaziland in Taiwan. Ms.Zeethu Dlamini said she hopes to collect 200 used shoes, sneakers and backpacks for 200 students in Swaziland and her idea is to help one school at a time.
If you are in Taiwan and wish to help (donation is until May 30), for details, please visitMore
The UK is the world leader in offshore wind, with 5 GW operating today and with more than one million jobs created in this sector. Taiwan and the UK signed an MOU on renewable energy in 2016 with the hope to work together on the development of offshore wind energy in Taiwan. Taiwan’s government plans to phase out nuclear power plants and have an energy mix of containing 50% natural gas, 30% coal and 20% renewable energy by 2025. The development of offshore wind energy has been the focus and the government’s long-term goal is to raise Taiwan’s offshore-wind power capacity to 3GW by 2025.
Apart from science and technology, Taiwan and the UK have forged cooperation in many other areas. Ms.Catherine Nettleton, the representative of the British Office in Taipei said this year, the UK is going to send a team of around 200 athletes to Taiwan to take part in the Taipei 2017 Summer Universiade or World University Games adding that It is an opportunity to build sporting links with Taiwan through “SPORT is GREAT” campaign.
Video of pre-interview with Ms.Catherine Nettleton
The representative of the British Office in Taipei, Ms.Catherine Nettleton, said the UK will remain an open economy that attracts a lot of investment and will aim for the freest possible relationship with former EU partners once the UK leaves the EU. The UK will continue to have strong economic social ties with the rest of Europe and will address the challenge of leaving the EU so that disruption could be minimized.
Ms.Catherine Nettleton said Brexit will not have any impact on Taiwan-UK existing relations, but instead Taiwan and the UK will continue to enjoy vibrant exchanges including cooperation in the areas of trade, investment, science, education and renewable energy.
Video of pre-interview with Ms.Catherine NettletonMore
Taiwan and Russia have enjoyed close economic and trade cooperation as well as cultural and educational exchanges. Taiwan-Russia bilateral trade amounts to around US$3.5 billion. Mr.Dmitrii Polianskii, the Russian representative, encourages businesspeople around the world to invest in Russia and to attend the Eastern Economic Forum scheduled for September this year in Vladivostok, the biggest port in far eastern Russia.
According to Mr.Dmitrii Polianskii, the number of Taiwanese visitors to Russia increased by 34% from around 15,000 in 2015 to 20,000 in 2016 and he believes the number will increase in 2017.
Tune into this week’s On the Line as the Representative of the Representative Office in Taipei for the Moscow-Taipei Coordination Commission on Economic and Cultural Cooperation, Mr.Dmitri Polianskii shares with us his views on Taiwan-Russia bilateral exchanges.
Amir Peleg recently visited Taiwan and exchanged views with Taiwan Water Corporation (TWC) on water solution problem. Amir Peleg is the founder and CEO of TaKaDu, a global leader in Integrated Event Management solutions for the water industry. Amir Peleg said his company launched a pilot project with Taiwan Water Corporation (TWC) last year to improve the water network management and help save water resources.
Taiwan, with high precipitation, yet it ranks 18th in terms of water shortage among countries in the world, water delivery pipes leak 600 tons of water every year.
Wow Africa is an NGO in Taiwan with the goal to promote the understanding of Africa through economic and cultural exchanges. It is also a platform to provide information about Africa to the general public in Taiwan. It bridges the gap between Taiwan and Africa and according to Pepe He Pei-Jia, co-founder and Editor-in-chief of Wow Africa, the media in Taiwan focuses on negative coverage of Africa and her NGO is to break the stereotype of negative perceptions about Africa. She said, for example, Rwanda, which has been perceived as underdeveloped, has been plastic free since 2008. The African country completely banned the use of plastic bags while other countries started imposing taxes on plastic bags.
Wow Africa has a Chinese website in Taiwan, and you can visit their website,
Datuk Yong Soo Heong was invited by Taiwan’s foreign ministry in late 2016 to witness what the government has been doing to promote the New Southbound Policy. In January this year, he submitted articles to his former company, Bernama, Malaysian national agency and the Edge Financial Daily, the most prestigious business and investment weekly in Malaysia. In his article, he talked about Taiwan’s New Southbound Policy in the areas of education and investment.
In the area of education, Datuk Yong Soo Heong said apart from Taiwanese government’s decision to increase the quota of scholarships from 20 to 30 Malaysian students, he said the educational institutions and the Taiwanese government should also hold education fairs in ASEAN countries and provide workshops as well as training to local institution to attract more non-ethnic Chinese to pursue higher education in Taiwan. Currently, around 15,000 Malaysian students, mostly Malaysian Chinese, are studying in Taiwan.More
Datuk Yong Soo Heong said his father’s hope was for him to acquire a position in the government of Malaysia. Datuk Yong said he started working for Bernama, Malaysian national agency whose customers are both from the government and private sectors, providing news to customers across Malaysia.
He started out as a sports reporter as he loves to play badminton and later on he was transferred to the business section and his live interview with then-prime minister Dr.Mahatir Mohamad on Malaysian economic policy during the financial crisis in 1998 was televised nationwide. Datuk Yong Soo Heong was appointed Chief Executive, the third person to rise to the post in Bernama and the first Chinese Malaysian.
Asked what his challenges were when he led Bernama, he said the transition from business section to political section in his career and the lack of Malaysian reporters who had a good command of English speaking and writing.More
The 2017 International Holocaust Remembrance Day was in Taipei on January 19. This year marks the second year that Taiwan has held International Holocaust Remembrance Day, which is usually observed on January 27. The event was jointly organized by Israeli and German representative offices as well as Taiwan’s Ministry of Education and the Central Library.
President Tsai Ing-wen was invited to make a speech and she said she hoped to see Taiwan and Israel undertake more cooperation in culture and education so that lessons of the holocaust will not be forgotten. The president cited an example of the error made by students of Kuang Fu Senior High School in Hsinchu, northern Taiwan who dressed up in Nazi uniforms at their school anniversary in December last year adding that Taiwan’s society does not have enough understanding of what happened to the Jewish people.
Mr.Asher Yarden, the representative of the Israel Economic and Cultural Office in Taipei said six million Jewish people were killed during the Holocaust and it is not merely a figure but it represents the lives of six million people. It took 70 years for the number of Jewish people in the world to reach nearly 16.6 million of 1939 before the Nazi genocide began.More