Belgium (Brussels Morning Newspaper), Taiwan’s Representative to the EU and Belgium says his country’s relationship with the European Union “has continued to broaden.”
Speaking on Monday, Alexander Tah-ray Yui, said, “We have continued to see notable developments in our partnerships with both Belgium and the European Union.”
He also said that EU Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen and High Representative Josep Borrell had “expressed their concern over growing tensions in the Taiwan Strait.”
He noted that they had “reiterated the importance of peace and stability and opposition to any unilateral change in the status quo.”
The Representative said Taiwan was “encouraged by the frequency and growing stature of delegations that have made trips both ways between Taiwan, Belgium, and the EU this year.”
These, he said, include the European Parliament, the Belgian Senate, and regional parliaments.
Industrial cooperation between Taiwan and Europe has also continued to grow, he told an audience on Monday.
The diplomat was speaking at an event in Brussels to mark Taiwan’s National Day.
Taiwan celebrates October 10 as its national day, marking an uprising in 1911 that ended China’s last imperial dynasty and ushered in the Republic of China. The republican government fled to Taiwan in 1949 after losing a civil war with Mao Zedong’s Communists, who set up the People’s Republic of China.
The Republic of China remains Taiwan’s formal name.
He told the packed audience at the city’s Autoworld car museum that Belgian products are “very present in everyday life in Taiwan.”
These range from beer and chocolate to wind farms DEME ships, and even mattresses.
World-leading Taiwanese semiconductor manufacturer TSMC recently announced plans to build its first plant in Europe, and he said he was “optimistic for more to follow.”
He added that TSMC and other Taiwanese companies are also working with different Belgian companies on green energy generation to reduce carbon footprints in their manufacturing.
In April, while still in Taipei, he said he had held the first cooperation consultation meeting with the Flemish government based on the memorandum of understanding signed in January 2022.
This year, the Belgian federal government, for the third time, voiced its support for Taiwan’s observer status at the World Health Assembly.
Moreover, Belgium’s Foreign Minister Hadja Lahbib has on several occasions reiterated the importance of maintaining the status quo across the Taiwan Strait.
The Representative added, “These expressions of support are genuinely meaningful and important to us.”
He told the audience, “These examples underscore our ever-growing collaborative partnership in the years to come.”
Tah-ray Yui recalled that “112 years ago, on October 10, an uprising started a chain of events that led to the creation of the Republic of China, based on Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s ideals to give power to the people.
“112 years later, Dr. Sun’s dream is a reality in Taiwan, as we are ranked tenth in the world and the most democratic in Asia according to the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Democracy Index 2022.”
He cautioned, “But this success story is not without its challenges. For decades, at least since I was born, we have consistently faced an existential threat from the People’s Republic of China, which falsely claims Taiwan is part of them.
“PRC’s dramatically increased tensions across the Taiwan Strait through military exercises since last year, along with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, is a convergence of interests of the two regimes to threaten the rules-based international order.”