Vice President Lien Chan this evening hosted a banquet in honor of visiting Dr. Cuthbert M. Sebastian, governor-general of Saint Christopher and Nevis. Mr. John Chang (vice premier of the Executive Yuan), Mr. Jin-pyn Wang(vice president of the Legislative Yuan), Dr. Jason Hu(ROC minister of foreign affairs), and other head, of government agencies concerned in this country were also invited to the banquet held at the Taipei Guest House.
During the banquet, Vice President Lien delivered a speech to extend his heartiest welcome to the distinguished guest. The full text of Vice President Lien's speech is as follows :
"It is indeed a great pleasure and privilege for me to host this dinner in honor of Your Excellency and other friends from Saint Christopher and Nevis. On behalf of the government and people of the Republic of China, I would like to extend our heartfelt welcome to Your Excellency and your distinguished delegation who have traveled a long distance to visit this country."
"Saint Christopher and Nevis is known for its beautiful scenery and friendly people. During the recent years, your great country has scored remarkable achievements, through the concerted efforts of your government and people in seeking national development, promoting tourism and expanding the facilities of Port Zante. Meanwhile, you have actively participated in the regional activities of international organizations and have contributed considerably to the political integration of the Caribbean region, for which I wish to express my admiration."
"Sharing the same commitment to democracy, freedom, economic development and the well-being of the people, Saint Christopher and Nevis and the Republic of China have enjoyed a cordial relationship. Since the establishment of diplomatic relations in 1983, the bonds between our two countries have been very close, with the ever-increasing cooperation and exchanges in the fields of economy, culture and agricultural technology, and with the frequent visits by our senior officials to each other's country. And now, Your Excellency has honored us with your visit, which not only helps to promote the mutual understanding between our two countries but also signifies our brotherly friendship."
"The Republic of China and Saint Christopher and Nevis have sincerely and closely cooperated in economic and cultural areas, and have supported each other in international affairs. Many times in recent years, your great country has voiced your support during the General Assembly of the United Nations for our bid to participate in the international community. My government and people will always remember, with gratitude, this kind gesture and I wish to take this opportunity to express our deep appreciation to the government and people of Saint Christopher and Nevis. It is our sincere hope that your government will continue lending your firm support to this country. At the same time, I wish to assure your Excellency that my government will carry on our commitment to enhancing the friendly and cooperative relations between our two countries, in order to secure the mutual benefit of progress and prosperity for our two peoples."
"In closing, may I ask all of our distinguished guests to join me in a toast to the health of His Excellency Governor-General Sebastian, to the continued prosperity of Saint Christopher and Nevis and the Republic of China, and to our long-lasting friendship."
In response, Governor-General Sebastian appreciated the ROC government and people for the warm hospitality accorded him. He pledged to further strengthen the existing ties of friendship between the ROC and Saint Christopher and Nevis.
Before the banquet, Vice President Lien met with Governor-General Sebastian for a 30-minute discussion during which they exchanged views on matters of mutual concern.