US sends assistant secretary of state Marie Royce to Taiwan for AIT dedication ceremony

The AIT complex, which cost US$250 million, shows the US’ commitment to Taiwan, said a US congressman

Marie Royce (right), assistant secretary for educational and cultural affairs at the US State Department, will represent the Trump administration to a

Marie Royce (right), assistant secretary for educational and cultural affairs at the US State Department, will represent the Trump administration to a

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – A number of American officials have arrived in Taiwan over the weekend, including Marie Royce from the U.S. Department of Statement, to attend the dedication ceremony of the new office complex of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT).

Gregg Harper, Republican congressman and co-chair of the Congressional Taiwan Caucus, spoke with reporters on Monday morning at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) and said the new AIT complex shows the importance of the relationship between Taiwan and the U.S.

“The US$250-million-dollar investment for this new facility” represents the U.S. government’s “strong” commitment to Taiwan, said Harper, who arrived in Taiwan last Sunday.

US Congressman Gregg Harper speaks with reporters at Taiwan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs on June 11

Earlier speculation suggested that President Donald Trump’s national security advisor John Bolton could visit Taiwan for the unveiling of the new AIT complex, a move that will certainly provoke Beijing, which opposes interactions of high-level officials between the U.S. and Taiwan.

However, according to the Reuters, Bolton, after traveling to Canada with U.S. President for the G7 Summit, arrived last Sunday in Singapore, where President Trump will hold a historic summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un on Tuesday.

Marie Royce, assistant secretary of state for educational and cultural affairs and the wife of the House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce, will represent the Trump Administration to join President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) and AIT Chairman James Moriarty for the AIT event on Tuesday.

Before she departs on Thursday, Royce will also hold discussions with Taiwan government officials concerning partnerships and exchanges between Taiwan and the U.S. said the AIT in a statement.

AIT Chairman James Moriarty also landed in Taiwan on Monday morning, according to a separate AIT statement.

This is Moriarty's fourth trip to Taiwan since assuming the office of chairman in December 2016. He will meet with a number of senior political and business representatives before his departure on Saturday.


AIT Chairman James Moriarty (center) with AIT Director Kin Moy (left) and Vice President Chen Chien-jen (Central News Agency)

On Sunday, Heather Nauert, spokesperson for the U.S. Department of Statement, also sent her congratulations via twitter and said the new AIT complex is “a milestone that reflects the importance of the U.S.-Taiwan partnership.”