Ambassador Calvin Ho the Republic of China (Taiwan )107th National Day, Kingstown.
It has been a great pleasure for me to serve in St. Vincent and The Grenadines as Ambassador of the Republic of China (Taiwan) since early April this year. On behalf President Tsai Ing-wen and the Government of the Republic of China (Taiwan), I would like to extend to you all our warmest welcome, and thanks for coming to celebrate with us the 107th Anniversary of my country.
Early this year, a high-level Delegation of St. Vincent and The Grenadines led by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Trade & Commerce, Sir Louis Straker visited my country.
I personally had the opportunity to meet him and the Delegation in Taipei and join their visit before I came to Kingstown to assume my new assignment in April.
I felt thrilled when I first time to see the national flag of St. Vincent and The Grenadines flying high, side by side with our national flag, along Kaitakelan Boulevard in front of our Presidential Office in Taipei.
It was a rewarding moment of joy and pride, because it was the perfect demonstration of the staunch friendship between our two countries.
As half year passed by since then and the year enters its last season, it is a good timing for me to brief you some up-to-date information of my country at this special occasion – my first National Day Reception hosted in Kingstown:
President Tsai Ing-wen said in her 2016 inaugural address that the administration would pursue a new economic model for sustainable development based on the core values of innovation, employment and equitable distribution. Over the past two years, with the joint efforts of the government and people, Taiwan has implemented a number of important reforms.
On the whole, Taiwan’s economy grew 2.86% last year, a three-year high. The unemployment rate for the first half of this year fell to 3.66%, a 17-year low.
Average wages are also at a historic high. These developments show that Taiwan has left economic stagnation behind.
To ensure people’s quality of life and employment, our central and local governments have been working to implement housing policies that will see housing justice done.
To help elderly people live more fulfilling lives, and to reduce the burden on families and young people, the government is putting together a multipronged long-term care system.
Since its implementation, this well-executed program has served many people, established many facilities, and connected people to resources.
In terms of the industrial and economic performance, last year, smart machinery has become Taiwan’s third industry, after semiconductors and display panels. Taiwan has also become an R&D and manufacturing center for smart machinery and high-end components.
Moreover, Taiwan is the world’s 4th largest exporter of machine tools, and a major Asian player in biomedical research.
As for our new agriculture, major accomplishments include creating a sustainable green environment, stabilizing farmer incomes and promoting intelligent production and digital marketing.
In the meantime, the government continues to strengthen international ties, promote research exchanges between industry and academia, improve security for the Internet and encourage the development of innovative businesses.
Taiwan has also made great efforts on judicial reform over the past two years. All achievements have brought our nation’s laws in line with those of advanced countries, and shown the government’s determination to fight corruption. Through this, justice has been served and the people’s rights protected.