TAIPEI – Taiwan and Paraguay were due to sign on Wednesday an agreement on economic cooperation in Taipei on trade, investment and small and medium-sized enterprises to strengthen bilateral economic ties, the Taiwanese Ministry of Economic Affairs said.
Finance Ministers Lee Chih-kung of Taiwan and Gustavo Leite of Paraguay announced the successful conclusion of the negotiations between Taiwan and Paraguay on Tuesday.
A signing ceremony with President Tsai Ing-wen and her Paraguayan counterpart, Horacio Cartes, will be held in Taipei on Wednesday.
Leite said that the agreement represents an important step in securing markets in Asia and in fostering bilateral ties with the island nation.
The agreement is based on a trade and investment memorandum signed in 2001 and a consensus reached between the two ministers in 2016, according to Taiwan’s spokesperson for the ministry of economic affairs Chen Ai-lan.
President Cartes is in Taiwan on a three-day official visit to celebrate the 60th anniversary of diplomatic ties between the countries.
Paraguay is one of the 20 countries that recognize Taiwan as a sovereign and independent country, 11 of which are located in Latin America and the Caribbean.
The strengthening of bilateral ties follows Panama’s decision last month to establish diplomatic relations with Beijing at the expense of Taipei.
As part of the “One China” policy, Beijing considers the island nation a breakaway province that will eventually be reunited with the mainland, whereas Taiwan considers itself a sovereign state.