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Bipartisan letter highlights need for Taiwan trade talks

News Archives ~ 2021
Thursday, July 1

WASHINGTON – This week, U.S. Senator Roy Blunt (Mo.) joined a bipartisan group of senators in sending a letter to the U.S. Trade Representative, Ambassador Katherine Tai, regarding the importance of reconvening trade agreement talks with Taiwan.

“We respectfully request that you prioritize these talks and take steps to begin laying the groundwork for negotiation of a free trade agreement (FTA), or other preliminary agreement, with Taiwan,” the senators wrote.

“Taiwan is the tenth largest trading partner of the United States-surpassing more populous nations such as India, France, and Italy-and the eighth largest market for American agricultural products. It embraces high standards of labor rights and environmental protection. We can all be confident that an agreement negotiated with Taiwan could serve as a model for what a high-standard FTA should look like,” the senators continued.

“Beyond commerce and investment, Taiwan has proven itself to be a true friend to the United States and a model of a vibrant democracy. While Chinese authorities denied American companies operating in China the ability to send personal protective equipment (PPE) back home during the pandemic, Taiwan stood up production lines of PPE for the United States when we were most in need,” the senators concluded.

The letter was led by U.S. Senators Marco Rubio (Fla.) and Mark Warner (Va.). In addition to Blunt, the letter was signed by U.S. Senators Jim Inhofe (Okla.), Kyrsten Sinema (Ariz.), Thom Tillis (N.C.), Cory Booker (N.J.), Marsha Blackburn (Tenn.), Chris Coons (Del.), Shelley Moore Capito (W.Va.), Joe Manchin (W.Va.), John Boozman (Ark.), Tim Kaine (Va.), Tom Cotton (Ark.), Kevin Cramer (N.D.), Roger Wicker (Miss.), Todd Young (Ind.), Steve Daines (Mont.), Rick Scott (Fla.), Ben Sasse (Neb.), Cindy Hyde-Smith (Miss.), John Barrasso (Wyo.), John Thune (S.D.), Tim Scott (S.C.), Mike Braun (Ind.), Mike Lee (Utah), Chuck Grassley (Iowa), John Cornyn (Texas), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska),Mike Rounds (S.D.), James Lankford (Okla.), Rand Paul (Ky.), Lindsey Graham (S.C.), Deb Fischer (Neb.), Dan Sullivan (Alaska), Ted Cruz (Texas), John Hoeven (N.D.), Roger Marshall (Kan.), Cynthia Lummis (Wyo.), Susan Collins (Maine), Pat Toomey (Pa.), and Bill Hagerty (Tenn.).

Click here to read the letter.