Question / Taiwan

17 September 2020
Question

12.48 pm

Asked by

Baroness D’Souza
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of reports of the presence of the Chinese Air Force in Taiwan’s airspace; and what steps they are taking to support the independence of that country.

Question / CPTPP

03 September 2020

What recent discussions she has had with her international counterparts on the UK joining the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership. [905349]

[…]

Like us, Taiwan, through its membership of the World Trade Organisation, is committed to the same values of free trade and free markets as we are, and we look forward to deepening our relationship with Taiwan in the coming trade talks.

Taiwan APPG expresses condolences at passing of Taiwan’s former President Lee Teng-hui

Please read our letter of condolence for the sad passing of Taiwan’s former President Lee Teng-hui, signed by Co-Chairs Lord Rogan and Martin Vickers MP

 

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31 July 2020

We are deeply saddened to learn of the passing away of Dr LEE, Teng-Hui, former President of Taiwan, on 30 July 2020 in Taipei. We, as Co-Chairs of the British-Taiwanese All-Party Parliamentary Group, would like to express our most sincere condolences and sympathy on behalf of our parliamentary colleagues, to the government and people of Taiwan.

Late President Lee made important contributions to Taiwan’s vibrant democracy, freedom of speech, and protection of human rights, which are the shared values between Taiwan and the UK today. His passing is truly a great loss to Taiwan and beyond.


Lord Rogan
, Co-Chair       Martin Vickers MP, Co-Chair

Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to Taiwan Lord Richard Faulkner and Trade Policy Minister Greg Hands talked with Taiwan Economy Minister via video call

Downing Street Trade Envoy to Taiwan Lord Richard Faulkner and Minister of State for Trade Policy Greg Hands MP engaged with Taiwan Economy Minister Wang Mei-hua in a three-way video call.

Greg Hands MP thanked Minister Wang Mei-hua for Taiwan’s PPE donation to the UK during the call, where the matters of British lamb, renewable energy and the Agreement on Government Procurement (GPA) were also discussed.

Question / Taiwan: Interpol

Q Asked by Martin Vickers (Cleethorpes)
Asked on: 12 May 2020

Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Taiwan: Interpol / 46032

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will make it his policy to support the (a) granting of observer status to Taiwan at the 89th INTERPOL General Assembly and (b) attendance of Taiwan in that organisation’s (i) meetings, (ii) mechanisms and (iii) activities.

A Answered by: Nigel Adams
Answered on: 22 May 2020

The UK’s longstanding policy on Taiwan and international organisations has not changed. The British Government continues to hold the view that the people of Taiwan have a meaningful contribution to make towards global issues such as combatting organised crime. We therefore support Taiwan’s meaningful participation in international organisations, such as INTERPOL, where there is precedent for their involvement, where they can contribute to the global good and where there is no pre-requisite of nationhood for participation. The UK has not made any representations on Taiwan’s observer status at INTERPOL this year but will work with international partners on this issue.

 

Question / Taiwan: Interpol

Q Asked by Martin Vickers (Cleethorpes)
Asked on: 12 May 2020

Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Taiwan: Interpol / 46033

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what representations he has made to member states of INTERPOL to (a) grant observer status to Taiwan at the 89th General Assembly of INTERPOL, and (b) enable Taiwan to have access to that organisation’s I-24/7 Global Police Communications System and key training programmes.

A Answered by: Nigel Adams
Answered on: 22 May 2020

The UK’s longstanding policy on Taiwan and international organisations has not changed. The British Government continues to hold the view that the people of Taiwan have a meaningful contribution to make towards global issues such as combatting organised crime. We therefore support Taiwan’s meaningful participation in international organisations, such as INTERPOL, where there is precedent for their involvement, where they can contribute to the global good and where there is no pre-requisite of nationhood for participation. The UK has not made any representations on Taiwan’s observer status at INTERPOL this year but will work with international partners on this issue.

 

Martin Vickers MP: Why Taiwan’s success has become a problem for WHO

Please read our Co-Chair Martin Vickers MP’s article published on “Comment Central“.

Taiwan first notified the WHO of Covid-19 on 31 December 2019, but regrettably the WHO chose to respond by publicly dismissing these concerns. Instead the WHO has chosen to accept, with no scrutiny or criticism, the word of the Chinese government, argues Martin Vickers MP

As the coronavirus gripped the world, closing all but essential services, separating citizens from their loved ones and changing our way of life in a way few would have previously imagined, one shining light defied the new world order. To date, Taiwan has contained the outbreak to just 428 confirmed cases and six deaths. As such, the Taiwanese people are largely able to carry on with their lives as normal. This is even more amazing if you consider the country’s links, through trade, economic activity and geography, with China.

Learning from the SARS outbreak in 2003, Taiwan knew that swift action was the key. Long before COVID-19 was a matter of public consciousness in the western world, Taiwan was putting in place measures to protect itself and its citizens. The screening of Chinese citizens entering the country began immediately followed by a complete border closure to anyone who had been in China as the situation developed. For its citizens, strict quarantine measures were introduced, production and distribution of PPE was ramped up and every effort to trace the flow of contact was made.

Taiwan benefits from a world-leading healthcare system. Just as in the United Kingdom, coverage is universal, but rather than being entirely taxpayer funded, the system revolves around a national health insurance plan, run by the government, covering everybody. The system has endured for 25 years and has public support over 80 percent. About 1 percent of its funding is spent on administration, compared to the NHS which spends £8 billion of its £100 billion budget. As the earliest signs of coronavirus began to emerge, officials at Taiwan’s National Health Command Centre began taking action to respond to the potential threat.

Sadly, the efforts being made were not fully appreciated at the time. Taiwan first notified the World Health Organisation (WHO) of the virus on 31 December 2019, specifically in relation to its concern regarding for potential for human-to-human transmission. But, regrettably, Taiwan are not members of the WHO and they chose to respond by publicly dismissing these concerns. Instead the WHO has chosen to accept, with no scrutiny or criticism, the word of the Chinese government.

Despite this, Taiwan is now outperforming the rest of the world and this will only advantage them more in the long run. It has been estimated that the economic cost of a one-month lockdown is a 3 percent contraction of full year GDP. Whilst the rest of the world is going to have to take tough economic decisions to bring their finances back on track after the pandemic passes, Taiwan will find itself in a very fortunate position.

This small but determined country has now refocussed its efforts to helping the rest of the world deal with the crisis. They are currently distributing 10 million facemasks globally, with a delivery arriving in London last week for use by the brave medical staff providing frontline care through the National Health Service.

Clearly, the middle of a global pandemic is not an appropriate time for an inquiry. However, once the worst is over and the world has returned to something resembling normality it will be imperative that answers are given to some of the burning questions that, arguably, should have been asked a long time ago. It is disappointing that it took such an extreme event to raise these questions but now they are being asked, it is essential that the opportunity to resolve them is not missed.

Taiwan is now a model. Economists around the world are studying the country’s handling of the greatest pandemic of a generation in order to determine how to avoid similar events happening in future. The WHO must acknowledge the legitimate and independent place of Taiwan in dealing with international health matters.

Video messages thanking Taiwan for donating masks to the UK

Please watch our Co-Chairs Lord Rogan, Martin Vickers MP and President Nigel Evans MP’s video messages thanking Taiwan for donating one million masks to the UK.

Lord Rogan, Co-Chair

Martin Vickers MP, Co-Chair

Nigel Evans MP, President