TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The U.S. office of Taiwan's main opposition party the Kuomintang (KMT) will be inaugurated by KMT Chair Eric Chu (朱立倫) when he visits Washington, D.C., in the spring, reports said.
The office, the party's first in the U.S. in over a decade, will be on Pennsylvania Avenue, which connects the White House and the U.S. Capitol. The choice of location demonstrates the party’s resolve to reclaim influence in Washington, the Liberty Times cited a KMT member as saying.
Staff have been working on preparations since Jan. 16, and the office will open after it completes registration in compliance with the Foreign Agents Registration Act, according to Eric Huang (黃裕鈞), deputy director of the KMT’s International Affairs Department. Huang has been tasked with heading the preparatory work for the overseas office.
He pointed out that the office will seek to establish dialogue with the U.S. after the KMT appoints a representative. For the longer term, the facility will work to fortify the opposition party’s diplomatic relations, communicate its policies, and have a better grasp of the U.S. government's stance on issues, per CNA.
The office's other activities will include arranging meetings with U.S. officials and visits to think tanks as well as holding seminars and speeches.
The KMT shuttered its office in 2008 after former President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) took office, but it was not reinstated when the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) took power in 2016. During the years it found itself sidelined, the DPP maintained a presence in Washington by networking with Taiwanese expatriates and NGOs, wrote CommonWealth Magazine.
A view from KMT office in the U.S. (CNA photo)