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Taiwan, eSwatini ECA to take effect Thursday

2018/12/25 19:34:25

Image taken from Pixabay

Taipei, Dec. 25 (CNA) An Economic Cooperation Agreement (ECA) between Taiwan and its only African ally, the Kingdom of eSwatini, will take effect this Thursday and is expected to enhance bilateral trade and ties, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said Tuesday.

The ECA was signed by Economics Minister Shen Jong-chin (沈榮津) and his eSwatini counterpart, Jabulani Clement Mabuza, on June 8 when Mabuza was in Taiwan as part of a delegation with King Mswati III, said Liu Bang-zyh (劉邦治), head of MOFA's Department of West Asian and African Affairs.

The agreement was passed by Taiwan's lawmakers on Nov. 2, and the two countries have since completed the required procedures, Liu said.

The ECA is expected to further facilitate bilateral cooperation in trade and investment and boost exchanges and two-way visits, he said.

According to the Bureau of Foreign Trade, eSwatini is Taiwan's 156th largest trade partner, with bilateral trade of around US$7.56 million in 2017.

Meanwhile, Liu said Taiwan's ambassador to eSwatini, Jeremy Liang (梁洪昇), signed an MOU with the kingdom on Dec. 7 to provide full scholarships to 100 eSwatini students to study at Swaziland College of Technology (SCOT) for three years.

The scholarship program will be officially launched in March 2019 as part of Taiwan's ongoing efforts to help nurture young talent in the southern African country, he said.

(By Joseph Yeh)