TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Menendez (D-NJ), the committee's top Republican Jim Risch (R-Idaho), and 50 other senators sent a letter to President Joe Biden on Wednesday (May 18) calling for the inclusion of Taiwan in the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF).
In the letter, the senators pointed out that the Indo-Pacific region accounts for 60% of the world economy and two-thirds of global economic growth. They asserted that while the IPEF is a powerful tool to foster a free and open Indo-Pacific, it must include all of America's regional allies and partners.
The senators noted that the U.S. and Taiwan had US$114 billion in bilateral trade in 2021 and highlighted Taiwan's status as a nexus for the global technology supply chain. The legislators emphasized that excluding Taiwan from the IPEF would "significantly distort the regional and global economic architecture," contravene U.S. interests, and enable Beijing to claim that the international community does not support significant engagement with Taiwan.
The authors of the letter stressed that the more the U.S. and its allies engage with Taiwan, the greater their "collective resilience against coercion" will be. Russia's invasion of Ukraine illustrates the efficacy of substantial economic support from the U.S. and its allies, and "the same is true for Taiwan," wrote the senators.
The letter then argued that Taiwan's inclusion in the IPEF would be an "invaluable signal of our rock-solid commitment to Taiwan and its prosperity and freedom."