AIT Official Text # OT-1917
April 15, 2019
President Tsai, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,
Last week in Washington, I participated in a number of activities commemorating the 40th anniversary of the Taiwan Relations Act, including the April 9 conference that President Tsai addressed. Those events demonstrated to me the broad-based, bipartisan support among Americans for our multidimensional partnership with Taiwan and our admiration for Taiwan’s political and economic transformation since 1979. You have heard those sentiments clearly expressed again tonight in the remarks of the previous speakers from the United States.
I would like to salute all gathered here for your efforts to advance the U.S.-Taiwan relationship. No matter what your role or field of endeavor – elected leader, educator, entrepreneur, artist, civil servant – you are making a real difference by building the ties between our peoples.
The Taiwan Relations Act offered an adaptable framework for a wide-ranging relationship and provided a firm foundation for growth of those ties. The TRA’s incredible success over these forty years was not pre-ordained, as one of my predecessors as AIT Chairman noted last week. The achievements we see today required vision and commitment. All of us here should resolve to foster the rising generation’s embrace of this partnership and the shared values on which it is based.
This 40th anniversary year will see, I am sure, further progress across the many dimensions of this partnership. AIT looks forward to working with our Taiwan friends to expand people-to-people ties. In that regard, we welcome and look forward to exploring Taiwan’s interest in establishing Preclearance operations at Taoyuan International Airport. Deepening our extensive economic links should be another focus for our joint efforts.
In closing, I want to convey a message that I heard throughout my meetings in Washington last week – the United States will continue to implement faithfully the Taiwan Relations Act and support Taiwan’s ability to defend itself and its democracy and to contribute to the international community.