TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — During the first visit of a German federal minister in 26 years, Minister for Education and Research Bettina Stark-Watzinger witnessed the signing of an agreement in Taipei on Tuesday (March 21).
Germany’s representative in Taiwan, Jörg Polster, and Taiwan’s envoy to Germany Shieh Jhy-wey (謝志偉) signed the “scientific and technological cooperation arrangement” as Stark-Watzinger and Taiwan’s National Science and Technology Council (NSTC) Minister Wu Tsung-tsong (吳政忠) looked on, the Liberty Times reported.
The NTSC had invited the German minister to Taiwan to discuss issues covered by the agreement, including AI, semiconductors, lithium batteries, and green energy development. Another important topic for Stark-Watzinger’s visit was the teaching of Mandarin to young Germans, Wu said.
The Taiwanese minister said that during a visit to Germany in November, he had invited Stark-Watzinger to travel to Taiwan, but had never expected she would actually succeed in making the trip within four months. The rapid planning of the visit showed that Taiwan was enjoying a positive reputation in Europe for its democracy, freedom, human rights, and high-tech industries, according to Wu.
He added that technological research and development in Germany and Taiwan complemented each other, with the Asian country functioning as a valuable partner for the European Union member nation.
The last time a member of the German federal cabinet visited Taiwan was in 1997, with Economics Minister Guenter Rexrodt traveling to Taipei.