TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) congratulated Brazil President-elect Jair Bolsonaro, who visited Taiwan earlier this year on a fact finding mission.
“The government and people of Taiwan look forward to stronger relations across the board with the world’s 4th-largest democracy,” said MOFA in a tweet on Oct. 28.
Bolsonaro won just over 55 percent of votes in a run-off election against Fernando Haddad of the Workers Party, who received 45 percent. Bolsonaro, a former Captain in the Brazilian Army, is a controversial character who successfully ran a hard-line and rightist campaign.
The president-elect has been characterized as “Taiwan-friendly” as Bolsonaro has repeatedly criticized China and its economic tactics, and visited Taiwan in February 2018. In doing so, he became the first Brazilian presidential candidate to visit Taiwan since the South American nation formally recognized China in 1974.
During his visit, Bolsonaro met with Taiwanese officials, as well as technology and academic institutions, in what was characterized as a fact finding mission to learn about local development and opportunities for collaboration, according to Liberty Times.
Bolsonaro (second right) in Taipei. (Image from Jair Bolsonaro’s Facebook)
Bolsonaro was impressed with National Taiwan University of Science and Technology (NTUST) during his visit, and was keen to hear about the university’s support in helping establish Taiwan-Paraguay Polytechnic University, according to NTUSU President Liao Ching-jong (廖慶榮), reported CNA.
The president-elect was also congratulated by French president Emmanuel Macron, U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, and U.S. President Donald Trump among others, reported AP.