The AIT and TECRO Joint Statement on the 3rd U.S.-Taiwan Digital Economy Forum

American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) Logo

December 11, 2019

The American Institute in Taiwan and the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office
Joint Statement on the 3rd U.S.-Taiwan Digital Economy Forum

The following is the text of a joint press statement issued at the conclusion of the 3rd Digital Economy Forum.

On December 10-11, 2019, in Taiwan, senior representatives from the United States and the Taiwan authorities, under the auspices of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) and Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the United States (TECRO), held the third Digital Economy Forum in Taipei to share priorities of the U.S.-Taiwan digital economy relationship.

During the Forum, the two sides held discussions on working together to advance the deployment of secure and trusted 5G networks, collaborating on technology standards, cooperation on digital connectivity and cybersecurity programming in partner countries, fostering an open data economy, facilitating cross-border data flows and privacy, and exchanging policy approaches for the responsible use of artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things.

AIT and TECRO, on behalf of their respective authorities, affirm support for the following policy priorities:

  • To support the deployment of secure and trusted 5G hardware and services that help uphold shared democratic and open-market values as embodied in the Prague Proposals. To highlight the value of new technologies that support open 5G architectures, and to more closely cooperate on supporting diverse 5G supply chains.
  • To support capacity building programs with partner countries through initiatives such as the U.S. government’s Digital Connectivity and Cybersecurity Partnership (DCCP), and the U.S.-Taiwan Global Cooperation and Training Framework, which provides credible alternatives to top-down, authoritarian approaches to Internet governance, promotes secure information and telecommunications technology (ICT) development, and builds the cybersecurity capacity of partners to realize the tremendous economic benefits of the digital economy.
  • To strengthen cybersecurity of the technology industry and its supporting infrastructure, recognizing that cybersecurity is a necessity in the development of the digital economy.
  • To promote application of best practices on data transparency, big data business models, and open governance. To adopt regulatory and policy approaches that are technology neutral and create the space for new innovations to rapidly emerge, while avoiding premature regulatory barriers.
  • To collaborate in the World Trade Organization Joint Statement Initiative on Electronic Commerce, and work together in the WTO toward the possible conclusion of a high-standard plurilateral agreement based on the Digital Trade Chapter of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).
  • To pursue closer integration of artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, and advanced manufacturing industries, while putting in place appropriate controls to prevent leakage of sensitive technologies.
  • To spur the transition to an innovation-based economy, in particular through integrating startup ecosystems with those of like-minded economies, promoting women’s entrepreneurship, and encouraging social and technological innovation for sustainable and democratic development in our respective territories and around the world.
  • To deepen semiconductor industry integration based on trusted partners, joint advanced research and development, and an understanding of the economic and national security implications of the semiconductor industry.
  • To facilitate the circulation, cultivation, and connection of talent between Taiwan, the United States, and other like-minded partners.
  • To promote an inclusive, open, and transparent system of Internet governance and active support for the multi-stakeholder approach; and
  • To support robust intellectual property protection and enforcement, including in the online environment.

The two sides welcomed the initiatives outlined in the 3rd U.S.-Taiwan SME Work Plan as vital for promoting technological and social innovation for good, in particular with respect to women’s empowerment and social entrepreneurship.

AIT and TECRO are pleased to announce Global Cooperation and Training Framework (GCTF) workshops related to digital economy to be held in 2020 promoting circular economy and Internet freedom; and they look forward to future GCTF workshops that advance our shared vision for an open, interoperable, reliable, and secure Internet.

AIT and TECRO look forward to working together with like-minded partners on the deployment of secure and trusted 5G networks consistent with the principles outlined in the Prague Proposals, engaging in capacity building through international training workshops and cyber exercises.

The participants applauded the recently launched Talent Circulation Alliance, and encouraged all like-minded partners to actively facilitate the circulation of digital economy and technology-related talent as an answer to brain drain and to ensure that Taiwan’s future remains firmly anchored in the free and open Indo-Pacific through enhanced people-to-people exchange among the region’s top talent.

To facilitate continual progress towards realizing the two sides’ shared policy priorities and initiatives listed above, a U.S.-Taiwan Digital Economy Working Group is expected to be established.  The Working Group intends to meet at least once a year to take stock of progress made and to establish a Work Plan for the following year.  Recognizing the full spectrum of the U.S.-Taiwan digital economy relationship has both economic and national security implications, the Working Group is expected to be co-chaired by the AIT Deputy Director and the Deputy Minister of the National Development Council.

The AIT delegation was led by Performing the Non-Exclusive Functions and Duties of the Assistant Secretary for Global Markets Ian Steff.  Participation from the United States government also included officials representing the U.S. Department of State, U.S. Department of Commerce, the Federal Communications Commission, the U.S. Agency for International Development, and the AIT Office in Taiwan.  The TECRO delegation was led by National Development Council (NDC) Minister Chen Mei-ling, and included representatives from NDC, the Board of Science and Technology of the Executive Yuan, the Department of Cybersecurity of the Executive Yuan, the National Communications Commission, the Ministry of Economic Affairs, the Ministry of Science and Technology, and TECRO. U.S. and Taiwan industry representatives also participated in the forum.