President planning visit to Caribbean allies: Foreign minister
Central News Agency
2013-02-16 06:20 PM
Taipei, Feb. 16 (CNA) Plans are under way for President Ma Ying-jeou to visit Republic of China diplomatic allies in the Caribbean, but the date for his visit has yet to be set, Foreign Minister David Lin said Saturday. The ministry has been making preparations since the end of last year, but "there is currently no clear timeline," Lin told reporters ahead of a rehearsal for the ministry's spring banquet. Lin's remark came after local media reported that Ma plans to visit Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and Saint Kitts and Nevis, all of which are in the Caribbean. The president has visited most of Taiwan's diplomatic allies in Africa, the South Pacific, Central America and South America, and the three Caribbean countries "should be the goal of the next phase," said Lin, who has recently returned from a visit to the three countries. Meanwhile, when asked if there are any new strategies for his ministry under the leadership of the new Cabinet that will be sworn into office Feb. 18, Lin said his ministry will coordinate with the Cabinet to strengthen economic cooperation with Taiwan's important trade partners. He said his ministry hopes to create favorable conditions for Taiwan's future inclusion in the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a proposed free trade group made up of Pacific-Rim countries, and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations' Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership. (By Hsieh Chia-chen and Christie Chen)
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