Washington, D.C. As part of a forum hosted by The Heritage Foundation and the Taiwan Foundation for Democracy, U.S. Senator Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) announced that he will be introducing a Senate resolution in support of a free trade agreement between the United States and Taiwan.
During the forum, Senator Toomey said the following:
“We’ve got a particularly attractive opportunity to expand trade with Taiwan. Strengthening those trade ties with Taiwan would benefit us both in security terms and in economic growth. For the U.S. and Taiwan certainly, but even the Indo-Pacific region, as a whole. Taiwan is already our tenth largest trading partner in goods.”
“Today, half of Taiwan’s trade and eighty percent of its investment is with China or Hong Kong. The U.S. can provide an alternative path. One of the things that we need to bear in mind as we go down this road, I hope, of expanding our trade and liberalizing trade with Taiwan is we should have free trade, not managed trade. We should have a free trade agreement that is based on maximizing free trade in goods and services, as wells as the movement of capital.”
“The goal of the agreement should be to lower barriers to trade and investment, preferably to eliminate barriers to trade and investment, and we could do that. I intend to introduce this week a Senate resolution in support of a U.S.-Taiwan free trade agreement. Since the Economic Cooperation Framework of 2010, Taiwan has expressed a desire to pursue new free trade agreements. And we should credit Taiwan to coming to the table to negotiate with the U.S.”
The forum, titled U.S.-Taiwan Partnership in Challenging Times, examined the importance of a free and Democratic Taiwan – especially in the face of the growing threat authoritarian forces in China pose to the Indo-Pacific region. In addition to Senator Toomey, the forum included remarks from His Excellency Ming-Tong Chen – Minister, Mainland Affairs Council, Republic of China (Taiwan) and Kay Cole James – President, The Heritage Foundation. The forum was hosted by Walter Lohman – Director, Asian Studies Center.