While meeting with Guatemalan Ambassador to the ROC Olga María Aguja Zúñiga on the morning of June 21, President Tsai Ing-wen thanked her for taking concrete action to support Taiwan at a time when Taiwan met with a number of diplomatic challenges. She also expressed hope that Ambassador Aguja will continue to lend Taiwan her full support after she returns to Guatemala, so that together we can further enhance our diplomatic ties.
In remarks, President Tsai noted that Ambassador Aguja will return to Guatemala in a few days to take on a new position. On behalf of the people of Taiwan, the president thanked Ambassador Aguja for all she has done for Taiwan, and extended our best wishes.
The president pointed out that over the past three years Taiwan and Guatemala have interacted very closely. She herself has paid a state visit to Guatemala, and Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales led a delegation to Taiwan earlier this year. Ambassador Aguja's assistance was indispensable in all these important bilateral exchanges.
President Tsai said that Guatemalan coffee is very well known in Taiwan, and Taiwan imported a record high of more than US$12 million worth of coffee from Guatemala last year. This tremendous achievement in bilateral cooperation is in part the result of Ambassador Aguja's "coffee diplomacy."
President Tsai pointed out that Ambassador Aguja has also brought Guatemalan and Mayan culture to Taiwan by organizing Guatemalan handicrafts shows and inviting Guatemalan artists to perform solo exhibitions in Taiwan. Such activities help the people of Taiwan to better understand our diplomatic allies and enhance bilateral interactions and friendship.
President Tsai said that Ambassador Aguja has actively taken part in a wide range of exchange activities, including international book fairs and international tourism exhibitions. "I want to thank you once again for everything you have done, particularly last year, when Taiwan faced numerous diplomatic challenges," said the president. Ambassador Aguja's strong support for Taiwan through concrete action gave us a deep appreciation of the firm friendship and support of our diplomatic ally, said the president.
Finally, President Tsai stated that Ambassador Aguja has been a steadfast partner to Taiwan, and will be an ideal spokesperson for Taiwan in Guatemala. The president expressed hope that Ambassador Aguja will continue to lend Taiwan her full support after she returns to Guatemala, so that together we can further enhance our diplomatic ties. The president told the ambassador that she is welcome to come back to Taiwan any time to see her old friends, and wished her the best of luck in her new position. President Tsai also asked Ambassador Aguja to convey our regards to President Morales.