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Taiwan's New Southbound Policy in line with U.S. Indo-Pacific policy

2018/07/17 20:19

New Delhi, July 17 (CNA) Taiwan's New Southbound Policy is compatible with the United States' Free and Open Indo-Pacific (FOIP) strategy, and helps to improve regional stability while fostering stronger alliances, U.S. scholars said Monday.

Speaking at a round table discussion held in Delhi, senior advisor for the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) Bonnie Glaser and Derek Mitchell, senior advisor to the United States Institute of Peace's Asia Center, discussed how the New Southbound Policy is an important means for Taiwan to avoid isolation in the region as a result of Chinese influence and obstruction.

By making more friends in the region, the country will be able to overcome its international isolation while contributing to regional peace, freedom and open access to trade markets, they said, adding that these are also goals in line with U.S. policy in the Indo-Pacific region.

Mitchell, who is a former U.S. ambassador to Myanmar, said China will not stop obstructing Taiwan internationally, and until countries begin standing up to Beijing, China's threatening posture toward other nations in the region will not stop.

Countries in the Indo-Pacific region need to seriously consider whether to fall in step with China or draw a line in the sand so that Beijing will understand that it does not have free reign to dominate its neighbors, he said.

Commenting on why Taiwan was not invited to participate in Exercise Malabar last month, a trilateral naval exercise involving the U.S., Japan and India held off the coast of Guam in the Philippine Sea, Glaser said there are possibilities that would have had to have been factored in before making such a move, because in the end, it would be Taiwan that suffers the consequences as a result of bigger obstruction from China.

The conference, titled "Taiwan's New Southbound Policy: Importance for India and the Indo-Pacific Region," was organized by the Institute of Chinese Studies (ICS) in Delhi and held at the India International Centre.

(By Charles Kang and Ko Lin)Enditem/J