At 12:30 p.m. on Monday, January 9 Honduras time (2:30 a.m. January 10 Taipei time), President Tsai Ing-wen attended a state banquet hosted by Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez.
In remarks, President Tsai said she felt deeply honored and grateful that President Hernandez would host such a grand state banquet. Noting that this was her third time meeting with President Hernandez since her inauguration in May of last year, the president said this showed that the two countries' 75-year-old diplomatic relationship is stable and abiding.
President Tsai pointed out that in addition to bilateral cooperation programs between Taiwan and Honduras in the fields of public health, education, social services, agriculture, and fisheries, over 300 young people from Honduras have studied in Taiwan on scholarships, including President Hernandez’s children. The Taiwan Scholarship program affords the people of the two countries more opportunities to interact, and it helps to cultivate talent that will contribute to the development of Honduras.
President Tsai said she was very happy to be in Honduras. Noting that Taiwan and Honduras have just reached a very good agreement under which Taiwan will expand its scholarship program, and Honduras will also help fund the program, the president expressed confidence that with the expanded scholarship program, even more talent will emerge to contribute to the development of industry and society in Honduras.
President Tsai stated that over the past few years, under the leadership of President Hernandez, Honduras has achieved outstanding progress in such areas as public safety, employment, and social services, and the government is now implementing an investment program designed also to increase employment.
President Tsai pointed out that Taiwan, as a diplomatic ally of Honduras, attaches great importance to developing cooperative ties with Honduras based on the principle of mutual assistance for mutual benefits. In the future, she said, the Taiwan government will encourage more Taiwanese manufacturers to locate in Honduras so that Taiwan and Honduras can serve as a gateway for the other to Asian and Central American markets, respectively. In this manner, she said, the two sides will certainly be able to help each other out.
President Tsai concluded her remarks by once again thanking President Hernandez for his invitation and the Honduran government for the wonderful hospitality shown to the delegation.