President Tsai Ing-wen met with a delegation led by California State Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon on the morning of July 30. She thanked the delegates for their staunch support for Taiwan-US relations, and expressed hope that together they could foster more opportunities for cooperation and create a sustainable Taiwan-US partnership.
President Tsai began by welcoming Speaker Rendon and the California State Assembly members to Taiwan. Speaker Rendon is an old friend of Taiwan, she pointed out, and previously spent time teaching English here. Since entering politics, he has staunchly supported the Taiwan-US friendship, and he cares deeply for Taiwanese Americans in California. She then sincerely thanked Speaker Rendon for his efforts.
President Tsai stated that Taiwan-US relations are the best they have been in decades thanks to our countries' concerted efforts over the past three years. This month, she said, she made state visits to Taiwan's allies in the Caribbean, and she thanked the US government for their assistance and the high-level courtesies they showed her delegation during transit stops in both New York and Denver.
She further pointed out that she has made transit stops in Los Angeles twice during previous state visits. Each time, she said, she received a warm welcome, met with important American political figures, and experienced the deep friendship between Taiwan and California.
Commercial, education, and cultural relations between Taiwan and California have always been close, she continued. Taiwan is California's 7th largest trading partner, and two-way trade totals nearly US$20 billion each year. California is also a key investment destination for Taiwan's high-tech industries, and Taiwanese firms have invested more than US$8.4 billion in California businesses over the years. She looked forward to seeing even closer relations between Taiwan and California across the board in the future.
The president stated that Speaker Rendon's delegation is in Taiwan to observe our high-speed rail system and other major infrastructure, as well as our economic development and industrial transformation, to serve as reference for California's future infrastructure projects.
Since taking office more than three years ago, the president continued, she has actively promoted the "5+2 industrial innovation program," which serves as a core engine for Taiwan's next-generation industrial growth. We are already seeing results, she said, and cutting-edge US firms like Cisco, Microsoft, and Amazon Web Services have all established R&D or innovation centers in Taiwan.
In conclusion, she wished Speaker Rendon's delegation a successful visit, and expressed hope that we can foster more opportunities for cooperation, and create a sustainable Taiwan-US partnership together.