May 18, 2023
JOINT PRESS RELEASE
SUPPORT FOR TAIWAN’S MEANINGFUL ENGAGEMENT WITH
THE WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION
AND PARTICIPATION AS AN OBSERVER IN THE WORLD HEALTH ASSEMBLY
We, the American Institute in Taiwan, the Australian Office, Taipei, the British Office Taipei, the Canadian Trade Office in Taipei, the Czech Economic and Cultural Office, the German Institute Taipei, the Japan-Taiwan Exchange Association, and the Lithuanian Trade Representative Office wish to reaffirm our support for Taiwan’s meaningful participation in the work of the World Health Organization and Taiwan’s participation as an observer in the World Health Assembly.
As this year’s 76th session of the World Health Assembly commences in Geneva, Taiwan remains largely excluded from the world’s international health system. Inviting Taiwan as an observer would best exemplify the WHO’s commitment to an inclusive, “health for all” approach to international health cooperation. Taiwan is a highly capable, engaged, and responsible member of the global health community and has been invited to participate as an observer in previous WHA meetings. Taiwan’s distinct capabilities and approaches – including its significant public health expertise, democratic governance, and advanced technology – bring considerable value that would inform the WHA’s deliberations. Taiwan’s isolation from the WHA, the preeminent global health forum, is unjustified and undermines inclusive global public health cooperation and security, which the world demands.
Viruses like COVID-19 do not respect borders, and no one is safe until everyone around the world is safe. Taiwan’s meaningful participation in the forums and technical committees of the World Health Organization would benefit both the people on Taiwan and the world.