On the morning of January 30, President Tsai Ing-wen met with a visiting delegation led by Heritage Foundation Founder Dr. Edwin J. Feulner, Jr.. President Tsai thanked Dr. Feulner and the Heritage Foundation for continuing to help consolidate and upgrade the long-standing partnership between Taiwan and the United States.
In remarks, the president noted that Dr. Feulner is well known in Taiwan. In the 40 years since his first visit, he has been a firm supporter of Taiwan-US relations, and witnessed Taiwan's transformation from a single-party authoritarian dictatorship into a free, open, and prosperous democracy.
President Tsai further noted that Dr. Feulner once said: "It's also a moment for us to take pride that we have stood by the people of Taiwan through some difficult times and worked with them in developing a free and prosperous society." She added that Dr. Feulner continues to be a strong supporter of Taiwan.
The president mentioned that last month, the Heritage Foundation co-hosted the 2017 Taiwan-US-Japan Trilateral Security Dialogue in Taipei, highlighting Taiwan's strategic importance in the Indo-Pacific region. In its report on the M503 aviation route issued last week, the Foundation pointed out the threat posed by China's unilateral action, and once again forcefully called for US support for Taiwan.
President Tsai pointed out that the Heritage Foundation continues to issue frequent studies and analyses focusing on issues including Taiwan-US relations, cross-strait relations, arms purchases, and regional security. These efforts highlight an idea, shared by both countries, that regional peace and stability require not only Taiwan's commitment, but a commitment by all stakeholders. At the same time, she said, these efforts demonstrate US support for maintaining the status quo in cross-strait relations, and how important it is to ensure that Taiwan is not subject to threats.
The president thanked Dr. Feulner and the Heritage Foundation for everything they've done to consolidate and upgrade the long-term Taiwan-US partnership, and expressed confidence that they will always stand by the people of Taiwan as one of our best friends. In closing, President Tsai asked the visitors to extend an invitation to new Heritage President Kay Coles James to visit Taiwan soon, and convey her best regards.
The delegation also included Mr. Anthony Kim, co-editor of the Heritage Foundation's annual Index of Economic Freedom.