President Tsai Ing-wen launched her 12-day, 11-night Journey of Freedom, Democracy, and Sustainability at noon on July 11, a trip that will see her visit four Caribbean allies: Haiti, St. Christopher and Nevis, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and St. Lucia. Before boarding the plane, the president explained that this trip will share Taiwan values like freedom, democracy, and sustainability with the world. It will also convey three ideas that Taiwan advocates: "sharing Taiwan values like freedom and openness with the world," "resolutely defending democracy," and "promoting international cooperation based on mutual assistance for mutual benefits with sustainable development as the goal," while leading the nation out onto the global stage.
Following is a translation of President Tsai's remarks:
In a few minutes, we will set out to visit our Caribbean allies including Haiti, St. Christopher and Nevis, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and St. Lucia. During the trip, we will also transit through the United States.
The theme of this trip—Journey of Freedom, Democracy, and Sustainability—expresses the Taiwan values that we want to share with our friends around the world. Leading Taiwan out onto the world stage is a president's most important duty.
During this trip, we will convey three ideas to the world that Taiwan advocates:
Number one is: Taiwan will share values like freedom and openness with the world. We are a maritime nation, and part of the global community. So we absolutely will not restrict ourselves to the Taiwan Strait alone. During this trip, we hope to find more diplomatic space and business opportunities for Taiwan.
Number two: Taiwan will resolutely defend democracy. Our hard-won democracy is now facing threats from and infiltration by external forces. Democratic nations worldwide are facing these challenges together, and we will engage in mutual cooperation with like-minded countries to ensure the stability of democratic systems.
Number three: Taiwan will promote international cooperation based on mutual assistance for mutual benefits with sustainable development as the goal. For many years, Taiwan has cooperated with its allies in fields like agriculture, healthcare, and education. Over the past few years, we have expanded the focus of our international cooperation to include maritime security, clean energy, and responding to climate change. We will strive to fulfill the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. We will also use our advantages in science and technology to make greater contributions to our allies, and the world.
A world of possibilities awaits us. During this trip we will use social media to show everyone Taiwan's achievements on the global stage and our diplomatic successes in real time. Let the journey begin.