TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A delegation from the Taiwanese Chambers of Commerce of North America (TCCNA) made a trip to Washington, D.C., recently to lobby for U.S. support for Taiwan’s inclusion in regional economic frameworks and global health organizations.
CNA reported that the delegation of 14, headed by TCCNA President Michelle Chang (張聖儀), arrived in D.C. on Thursday (March 31) and remained in the city for three days. The group met with almost 40 senators and representatives as well as officials of the Department of Commerce and the American Institute in Taiwan.
During a press conference on Saturday (April 2), Chang said the delegation had three goals for the trip. The first was for members of Congress to help facilitate the signing of a Taiwan-U.S. bilateral trade agreement and support Taiwan’s membership in the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) promoted by U.S. President Joe Biden.
The second was to get Congressmen and women to support Taiwan's bid to to join the World Health Organization (WHO) and attend the World Health Assembly, the latter of which will take place on May 22 in Geneva, Switzerland. Chang was quoted by CNA as saying, “We hope that, at this important point in time, the WHO can at least make Taiwan an observer.”
Finally, Chang said, the delegation wanted the U.S. to support Taiwan’s inclusion in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), though the U.S. is itself not a member. On Thursday, the group had tea with 14 unnamed CPTPP member state representatives, who were cited as saying they will communicate the TCCNA’s message to their governments.
The delegation also visited Department of Commerce Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Asia Richard Steffens and AIT Managing Director Ingrid Larson in order to facilitate conversation on Taiwan-U.S. economic exchanges, Chang said.