TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Embassy held a ceremony celebrating 43 years of independence from the U.K. at Taipei’s diplomatic quarter building on Thursday (Oct. 27).
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Ambassador Andrea Bowman said in a speech that for 43 years, her fellow Vincentians “have been paddling our own canoe.” She added that “our oars must move in unison. We have to row together.”
Bowman praised the Caribbean country’s democratic system as “solid” and described its political infrastructure as “robust.” She said that the nation’s education system is slowly but surely meeting the needs of the community.
The ambassador pointed out that this year’s Independence Day theme is “Our resilience, our fortitude, our people” but said she believed replacing "fortitude" with "resilience" is more appropriate. This is due to the fact that Vincentians were able to overcome the La Soufrière volcano eruption in April 2021, the COVID pandemic, and “other health, environmental, and societal challenges of no small measure.”
Bowman said she was grateful to be able to mark the special occasion with the Vincentian community in Taiwan “as we continue to cress the waves, ride the tides together in our canoe.”
Vice Foreign Minister Alexander Tah-ray Yui (俞大㵢) said that since Taiwan and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines established diplomatic relations in 1981, it has been 41 years of “brotherhood.” He pointed out that the two countries have been engaged in mutually beneficial cooperation in education, public health, ICT, agriculture and infrastructure, demonstrating “a very strong partnership.”
Yui also mentioned that Taiwan has launched a post-COVID economic recovery program focused on women's empowerment, which he said has been “very well received.”
The vice foreign minister said Taiwan is thankful for Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves’ visit following China’s large-scale military exercises in retaliation for U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit. Gonsalves’ trip was a strong sign of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines’ support for Taiwan, Yui said.
He predicted that Bowman will reach higher heights in bilateral relations moving forward.
In addition to a wide variety of local Vincentian dishes provided by ABV Caribbean Bar and Kitchen, Vincentian nationals Craiglee Sam and Kamara Foster delivered a special speech and gave a cultural performance, respectively.
In an interview with Taiwan News last month, Bowman said Saint Vincent and the Grenadines has a “real friendship” that focuses on people-to-people relations and pledged that her nation will “stand by Taiwan.”
Updated : 2022-10-27 23:39 GMT+08:00
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