Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) lawmakers yesterday launched the Republic of China-Switzerland Inter-Parliamentary Amity Association at an event at the Legislative Yuan in Taipei.
The association would promote bilateral trade and bolster cooperation between the two nations through cultural, academic, scientific and other exchanges, said Legislator Chang Yu-mei (張育美), who heads the association.
“Taiwan and Switzerland have many similarities: Both have hard-working people who have created a democratic society, and both have many world-famous industries,” Chang said.
Switzerland is known for its banking and financial sector, luxury watches, precision machinery, pharmaceuticals, biomedical advances and food industry, she said.
Trade Office of Swiss Industries Director Reto Renggli had other commitments and was not able to attend the event, but he visited the legislature on Thursday and fully supports the initiative, Chang said, adding that he discussed ways to promote bilateral trade and cultural exchanges.
Members of the Suisse-Taiwan Friendship Group, including Swiss national councilors Roland Buchel, Andreas Glarner and Fabian Molina sent video greetings and messages of support.
Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Tien Chung-kwang (田中光) said that Taiwan and Switzerland are democratic countries that “are small and beautiful, and have many shared values while holding substantial soft power.”
“Both have good development and innovation in precision machinery, computer systems and other high-end technologies, so it is a natural partnership between our two countries,” Tien said.
Ministry of Economic Affairs data showed that 348 Swiss firms had invested a combined US$953 million in Taiwan as of the first half of last year, the fifth-largest amount among European nations and 16th worldwide.
Twenty-five Taiwanese firms invested a combined US$157 million in Switzerland last year, including Evergreen, Asustek, Acer, Delta Electronics, and those in the precision machinery, machine tool and biomedical sectors.
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