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President pledges to upgrade Taiwan-Central America ties

2010/07/08 15:59:16

Taipei, July 8 (CNA) President Ma Ying-jeou pledged Thursday tocontinue to upgrade Taiwan's relations with its Central Americanallies while adhering to his "modus vivendi" diplomatic truce withChina.

Under this policy, Taiwan has engaged peacefully with China inthe international arena and does not oppose unofficial economic andtrade ties between its allies and China, Ma said.

"This policy has allowed us to further promote bilateralcooperation, which is mutually beneficial," he said while receiving adelegation led by Jacinto Suarez Espinoza, president of the CentralAmerican Parliament.

According to Ma, friendship between Taiwan and Central Americahas been strengthening over the past seven years, with Taiwanconcluding four free trade agreements with Central American nations.

While exports from Central America to Taiwan have recorded a1,600 percent growth during this period, Taiwan's exports to CentralAmerica have doubled, Ma said.

In terms of Taiwan's relations with China, Ma said he has beenseeking to improve cross-strait relations since his inauguration twoyears ago, and 14 cross-strait agreements have since been concluded.

"This is a rare and unprecedented development over the past 60years," he said.

As a result of improved relations with China, Taiwan's ties withother countries, either with or without diplomatic ties, have alsoimproved, Ma said.

(By Lee Shu-hua and Y.F. Low)