Tuvalu Parliament speaker to visit Taiwan, meet with President Tsai

Speaker of the Parliament of Tuvalu Samuelu Penitala Teo will meet President Tsai Ing-wen (???) during a visit to Taiwan from Jan. 8 to Jan. 12, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA).

In a statement, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said it welcomed the 12-member delegation led by Teo, the highest-ranking Tuvaluan official to visit Taiwan since Prime Minister Kausea Natano in September last year.

The two visits by Kausea and Teo demonstrate the strong support for Taiwan from the South Pacific ally's executive and legislative branches, MOFA said.

According to MOFA, Teo will sign a joint statement with Legislative Speaker Yu Si-kun (???) declaring that Tuvalu and Taiwan would continue deepening bilateral ties through parliamentary exchanges.

The delegation will also meet with Foreign Minister Joseph Wu (???) and attend a banquet hosted by Deputy Foreign Minister Tien Chung-kwang (???), MOFA said.

In addition, the group will visit food processing and fisheries facilities as well as the headquarters of the partially government-funded International Cooperation and Development Fund, MOFA added.

Teo first visited Taiwan in 2017 as a member of the Tuvalu Parliament prior to becoming speaker, and MOFA said the speaker had shown his firm support for Taiwan through his participation in a 2021 social media campaign calling for the country's inclusion as an observer in the World Health Assembly.

The ministry added that Teo had also given a speech at the launch of the Formosa Club - a Taiwan-friendly group of international members of parliament that same year.

Tuvalu is one of four countries in the South Pacific that have diplomatic relations with the Republic of China, Taiwan's de jure name, having established ties in 1979.

Since then, the two countries have maintained a close and fruitful partnership, collaborating in areas such as infrastructure, health care, clean energy, information and communication services, education, agriculture, fishery, and advancing women's rights, MOFA said.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel