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Taiwan president to speak at Australian think tank event

President Tsai will give video speech at event hosted by Australian Strategic Policy Institute

President Tsai Ing-wen. (Presidential Office photo)

President Tsai Ing-wen. (Presidential Office photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) will give a video speech and answer questions at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute's (ASPI) annual Indo-Pacific Leaders Dialogue event at 1:00 pm (Taiwan time) today, according to Presidential Office Spokesperson Kolas Yotaka.

Kolas said Wednesday (Aug. 26) evening that President Tsai’s speech will mention Taiwan and Australia's shared responsibility to maintain "peace" and "prosperity" in the Indo-Pacific as important players of the region. Tsai will also touch upon the bilateral sharing of anti-epidemic supplies and open, transparent information, which has enabled the two countries to survive the first wave of the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic, CNA reported.

Kolas also stated that President Tsai is looking forward to beginning negotiations for an Economic Cooperation Agreement (ECA) between Taiwan and Australia as soon as possible, which will benefit the economic and trade development of the two countries.

The Hong Kong national security law is a threat to peace in the South China Sea, Kolas said. She remarked that Taiwan firmly supports the people of Hong Kong in “pursuing freedom, democracy, and human rights” and that the two countries have the same goals of improving the current status of information security and communications and providing Pacific island countries with the necessary equipment to combat false information.

In addition to the speech, Kolas said ASPI will also ask the president five questions including ones regarding the “one China policy” and a potential cross-strait conflict. Kolas also said that President Tsai will make it clear that Beijing's idea of "one China" is essentially "one country, two systems," which is unacceptable to the people of Taiwan.

“Taiwan is a democratic country,” Kolas said. The People's Republic of China has no jurisdiction over the nation, she added, saying that citizens enjoy political autonomy and reject any attempt to minimize Taiwan’s international status.

The future of Taiwan is entirely determined by the people of Taiwan; this is what Taiwan has always insisted on, the spokesperson concluded.

Updated : 2022-05-18 15:42 GMT+08:00