Paraguayan lawmakers arrive in Taiwan to strengthen bilateral ties

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Senator Blas Antonio Llano Ramos

19th March 2023 – (Taipei) A delegation of Paraguayan lawmakers led by Senator Blas Antonio Llano Ramos arrived in Taiwan on Sunday to strengthen bilateral ties amid rising pressure from China. This visit comes as Honduras recently announced its decision to sever ties with Taiwan and recognise China. The delegation, which includes Senator Fernando Alberto Silva Facetti and Chamber of Deputies member Guadalupe Aveiro, will meet with high-ranking officials including Legislative Speaker You Hsi-kun, Foreign Minister Joseph Wu, and Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Alexander Tah-ray Yui. The group will also visit several government agencies and cultural sites during their stay in Taiwan.

Paraguay is set to hold its presidential election in April, which could potentially impact the country’s diplomatic ties with Taiwan. The outcome of the election will determine whether Taiwan’s sole South American ally will continue to support Taipei or shift its allegiance towards Beijing.

Earlier this year, President of the Chamber of Deputies of Paraguay Carlos Maria Lopez Lopez visited Taiwan, followed by Paraguay President Mario Abdo Benitez in February. Both visits aimed to reaffirm bilateral ties between the two nations.

Despite pressure from China to switch diplomatic recognition, Paraguay has remained a steadfast ally of Taiwan. In 2018, Paraguay became the first Latin American country to open an embassy in Taiwan.

During the visit, the Paraguayan lawmakers will visit the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Mainland Affairs Council, International Cooperation and Development Fund, Institute for National Defense and Security Research, and the Paraguay Embassy in Taiwan. This is an opportunity to enhance economic cooperation between the two nations and explore new investment opportunities.

Apart from official meetings, the delegation will also visit cultural sites such as Hsinchu Science Park, Taipei 101, and the National Palace Museum. This cultural exchange will foster closer ties and promote mutual understanding between the people of both nations.