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Taiwan foreign minister warns of China's expansionist aspirations

Joseph Wu says global support crucial in maintaining peace, stability in Taiwan Strait

Taiwan Foreign Minister Joseph Wu delivers speech at International Centre for Defence and Security in Estonia. (MOFA photo)

Taiwan Foreign Minister Joseph Wu delivers speech at International Centre for Defence and Security in Estonia. (MOFA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan Foreign Minister Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) on Wednesday (Nov. 8) warned of China’s global authoritarian expansion in a speech at the Estonia-based think tank International Centre for Defence and Security.

China currently employs hybrid warfare tactics such as information warfare and grey zone strategies in a silent war against Taiwan, Wu said. Despite this, Taiwan remains undeterred to boost its self-defense, he said, adding that it will continue cooperating with partners like the U.S. and learn from Baltic nations in developing asymmetric warfare capabilities, per a Ministry of Foreign Affairs statement. Under President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文), Taiwan is not provocative or reckless, but it will not yield to China's pressure, he said.

Wu pointed out that Taiwan is a key trading partner for the EU and plays a significant role in the global supply chain. Currently, around 50% of global maritime trade passes through the Taiwan Strait, with over 60% of semiconductors being manufactured in Taiwan, the foreign minister said. If there were a conflict in the Taiwan Strait, it would severely impact the global economy, he said.

The global community’s continued concern about the situation in the Taiwan Strait can help reduce the possibility of China using force against Taiwan, he said. The support of international friends is crucial in maintaining peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait, Wu said.

He thanked Estonia for support for Taiwan, as demonstrated by visits from Marco Mihkelson, chair of the Estonian parliament’s foreign affairs committee, and Andrus Ansip, the former Estonian prime minister. Wu also appreciated the pro-Taiwan remarks by Estonia’s minister of health, Riina Sikkut, at the World Health Assembly.

The foreign minister emphasized that authoritarian regimes want to change the existing rules-based international order. Taiwan will not yield to authoritarianism and will continue to strengthen its resilience, he said. Taiwan will also continue cooperating with like-minded countries such as Estonia to defend the values it believes in and its democratic and free way of life, he added.

Wu is currently on a tour of the Baltic nations to shore up support and promote Taiwan as a democratic ally. His trip comes as Taiwan and Estonia are in talks to mutually establish representative offices in each other’s countries.

China has expressed opposition to Taiwan establishing “any organization of official nature” in Estonia.