On the morning of July 12, President Tsai Ing-wen welcomed Paraguayan President Horacio Cartes to Taiwan with full military honors. In remarks, she noted that Taiwan and Paraguay frequently interact, and that the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties is an important milestone in the bilateral relationship. President Tsai further expressed hope that Taiwan and Paraguay will continue to cooperate and jointly create win-win situations.
The military honors ceremony got underway at 10 a.m. in the plaza fronting the Presidential Office Building. Following a 21-gun salute, performance of the two countries' national anthems, and a military review, President Tsai and President Cartes each delivered remarks.
In her remarks, President Tsai noted that July 12 was the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Taiwan and Paraguay, and that she was happy to be able to welcome President Cartes with full military honors on his third visit to Taiwan. On behalf of the government and people of Taiwan, she extended her sincerest welcome to her Paraguayan counterpart and his delegation.
President Tsai pointed out that Taiwan and Paraguay have always supported each other on the international stage, and bilateral cooperation as well as cultural, economic, trade, and educational exchanges have taken place without interruption throughout the years, making bilateral ties even firmer and closer.
President Tsai stated that in recent years, Paraguay has compiled outstanding achievements in both domestic and foreign affairs under the leadership of President Cartes, and its economy has grown quickly, attracting a lot of foreign investment. Moreover, Paraguay this year became a member of the Development Centre of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. President Cartes has thus transformed Paraguay into one of the core nations of Latin America, which is very impressive.
President Tsai stated that President Cartes was the first head of state from a diplomatic ally to meet with her at the Office of the President following her swearing-in ceremony last year. The two countries interact frequently, and the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties is an important milestone in the bilateral relationship. President Tsai said it was a great honor that she and President Cartes were able to represent their respective governments and peoples in marking this important moment at the Office of the President, and she further expressed hope that Taiwan and Paraguay will continue to cooperate and jointly create win-win situations.
President Cartes then delivered remarks of his own, noting that since the Republic of China government relocated to Taiwan in 1949, Taiwan has managed under difficult international circumstances to stun the world by achieving rapid economic development and modernization. It was in 1957 that the Republic of China and Paraguay established formal diplomatic relations, and July 12 marked the 60th anniversary of that momentous occasion. That was the main reason why he was leading a visiting delegation in his capacity as head of state. He said that the visit demonstrated how important Taiwan is to Paraguay, as well as the close cooperation among the people of the two nations and the stable diplomatic ties between the two countries.
President Cartes pointed out that the long-standing friendship between Taiwan and Paraguay has remained unchanged over the years, and in fact has grown continually stronger. He also reiterated that the belief of the government and people of Paraguay in their friendship with the Republic of China will continue to grow stronger, and that sincere friendship and mutual support will provide the basis for continued consolidation of close cooperation and exchanges between the two nations.
Also attending the welcome ceremony were the visiting delegation, the foreign diplomatic corps in Taiwan, Vice President Chen Chien-jen, Secretary-General to the President Joseph Wu (吳釗燮), and Minister of Foreign Affairs David T. Lee (李大維).