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U.S. official to visit Taiwan for investment promotion
Central News Agency
2012-10-31 06:48 PM
Taipei, Oct. 31 (CNA) Steve Olson, executive director of the investment promotion program SelectUSA, will visit Taiwan soon to encourage more Taiwanese businesses to invest in America, a U.S. trade official said Wednesday. During his visit that is likely to take place by mid-November, Olson will hold seminars on investment in America, according to Francisco Sanchez, U.S. Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade, who is in Taiwan to promote bilateral trade and investment. Olson will make several presentations in Taipei and Kaohsiung, Sanchez said at a luncheon for members of the business community in Taiwan. "We should be investing more in each other," he said, adding that the two countries should also look for ways to increase bilateral trade. Last year, Taiwan's direct investment in the U.S. was US$5.2 billion and bilateral trade amounted US$67 billion, according to Sanchez. Noting that Taiwan's inclusion in the U.S. Visa Waiver Program (VWP) will take effect Thursday, Sanchez said it is an important win-win partnership to facilitate travel to America. More and more Taiwanese people will have the chance to experience the history and landmarks in the U.S., which will deepen mutual understanding of the peoples on the two sides and strengthen the bilateral economic relationship, he said. Under the VWP, Taiwan nationals can visit the U.S. for the tourism and business purposes for up to 90 days without a visa. Taiwanese travelers spend more than US$1 billion per year in total on travel to the U.S., according to Sanchez. "We expect to see these business, tourism and cultural exchanges expand even further," with Taiwan's entry to the visa waiver program, he said. On the issue of trade expansion in Asia, Sanchez suggested that Taiwan open its market further and ensure that its regulations are in line with international standards. "I'm very pleased to hear that U.S. beef is again available in Taiwan," he said. This is "a very important step" for Taiwan in moving toward a more open market, he added. The government's decision earlier this year to import U.S. beef with allowable levels of ractopamine residues "helps strengthen confidence in Taiwan as a responsible trading partner," Sanchez said, stressing that "U.S. beef is safe." It will also help build a stronger foundation for future bilateral cooperation on other trade issues, he said. (By James Lee and Elaine Hou)
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