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Tuesday, 19 October 2021 - Strasbourg Provisional edition

EU-Taiwan political relations and cooperation (debate)

  Charlie Weimers, rapporteur. – Madam President, I would like to thank all shadow rapporteurs for their excellent and positive cooperation. I believe that through our very constructive work we were able to present a report that will be supported by a large majority.

Colleagues, this report is historic. It is the first time that the European Parliament discusses and votes on a comprehensive report that focuses solely on EU—Taiwan relations. The Parliament truly paved the way with this recommendation. While the Commission was formulating its Indo—Pacific strategy, the EP made its voice heard about the great importance it attaches to Taiwan’s inclusion in the EU’s policy towards the region.

Dear High Representative, I would like to stress several points from the report that calls on you, on behalf of the EU, to put into action. Taiwan is a like—minded partner with whom Europe shares many common values. In a region where this is not always a given, in light of Taiwan’s robust democracy and technologically advanced economy, it is crucial that the EU and Taiwan pursue a comprehensive and enhanced partnership that underpins the rules—based order. Therefore, in order to prepare for negotiations to deepen our economic relations, the EU needs urgently to begin an impact assessment, public consultation and scoping exercise on a bilateral investment agreement with the Taiwanese authorities.

The EU must also more strongly condemn China’s continued military belligerence against Taiwan. We must stress the need for freedom of navigation and overflight in the East and South China Sea, as well as the importance of pursuing peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait. Just a few weeks ago, China sent over 150 warplanes, including fighter jets and nuclear—capable bombers, into Taiwan’s air defence identification zone. Despite China’s empty words seeking a peaceful reunification with Taiwan, such actions signal the contrary. Taiwan’s Defence Minister, Chiu Kuo-cheng, has stated that given the continuous and significant military build—up, China could be capable of mounting a full—scale invasion of Taiwan by 2025.

Dear High Representative, the EU must condemn China’s action in the strongest possible terms and stress that China’s actions against Taiwan will have consequences for EU—China relations. The EU must, despite Chinese pressure, strongly advocate for Taiwan’s meaningful participation as an observer in meetings, mechanisms and activities of international bodies, including the World Health Organization. Let us not forget that while the Chinese Communist Party tried to deceive everyone, it was Taiwan that brought the COVID—19 outbreak in Wuhan, China, to the world’s attention.

Dear High Representative, in order to better reflect the broadened scope of our ties with Taiwan we call on you to change the name of the European Economic and Trade Office in Taiwan to the European Union Office in Taiwan.

Dear colleagues, on behalf of the ECR, I would like to thank you once again for the excellent cooperation, and I look forward to today’s debate, a debate that will be conducted in the democratic tradition of Europe, despite the Chinese Communist Party’s attempts to stop us from doing so.

Senaste uppdatering: 3 november 2021Rättsligt meddelande - Integritetspolicy