Saint Lucia-Taiwan partnership for the 15th Trade Expo is a success
The Embassy of the Republic of China (Taiwan) and the Ministry of Commerce, Manufacturing, Enterprise Development, Cooperatives and Consumer Affairs hosted another successful Saint Lucia-Taiwan Partnership Trade Expo from 2-4 November 2022.
Held at the Harbor Club, Rodney Bay, Gros Islet, under the theme “Building Strong Bonds Through Sustainable Trade,” this year’s trade expo featured 25 Taiwanese companies and 27 Saint Lucian companies.
The opening ceremony last Wednesday morning brought together many people, including His Excellency Cyril Charles, Acting Governor General, and Mrs. Charles; Ms. Chen; Prime Minister Hon. Philip J. Pierre; various government ministers; Hon. Claudius Francis, Speaker of the Legislative Assembly of Saint Lucia; Senator Alvina Reynolds; Hon. Allen Chastanet, Leader of the Opposition; permanent secretaries; other government officials and members of the business sector.
In his remarks, His Excellency Peter Chia-yen Chen, Taiwan’s Ambassador to Saint Lucia, said the annual trade expo is a great opportunity for Saint Lucian and Taiwanese businesses to showcase their products and services to potential local and international buyers. He said interest in attending the trade expo continues to grow, making it one of the best venues to showcase the best quality products from MSMEs in Saint Lucia and Taiwan.
Ambassador Chen said many Taiwanese companies that displayed products in the Taiwan pavilion at the trade expo demonstrated Taiwan’s commitment to reducing its dependence on fossil fuels.
“Taiwan’s leading ICT companies have pledged to use 100% renewable electricity by 2050, including some of the companies showcasing their products in the Taiwan pavilion,” Ambassador Chen said. “As Taiwan’s total trade value ranks 16th in the world and its ICT industry plays a crucial role in global technology supply chains, Taiwan’s ICT products greatly contribute to sustainable trade and fulfill their vision initiative. UNFCCC net zero.”
Ambassador Chen thanked Hon. Hippolyte and his Ministry of Commerce team who he said were very efficient and responsive during the planning and execution phases of this year’s show.
Prime Minister Hon. Philip J. Pierre thanked the Government of the Republic of China (Taiwan) and the Ministry of Commerce, Manufacturing, Business Development, Cooperatives and Consumer Affairs for continuing to sponsor the annual trade expo. He said that Taiwan continues to be a friend of Saint Lucia, thanks to its unwavering support for development. Through initiatives such as the trade show, the Hon. Pierre said, business in Saint Lucia is lively.
“I see a new spirit for business development in Saint Lucia”, Hon. Pierre said in his speech. “I see the excitement, I see the drive. I see business people willing to take advantage of government incentives. I want to congratulate all small and medium-sized businesses in Saint Lucia. I think they deserve a round of applause for their perseverance and commitment.
Meanwhile, the Hon. Emma Hippolyte, Minister of Trade, Manufacturing, Business Development, Cooperatives and Consumer Affairs, said the annual show “serves as an endearing symbol of solidarity and cooperation between Taiwan and Saint Lucia.”
“I value the fact that the event emerged through the COVID-19 doldrums and continues to create opportunities for Taiwanese and Saint Lucian entrepreneurs to collaborate,” said the Hon. Hippolyte said in his welcoming remarks. “May this also serve as a good omen for the bond between our two nations: that despite the challenges, trials and tribulations that may lie in wait for us, likewise will remain steadfast towards each other, two nations on both sides other of the globe.”
Hon. Hippolyte said the participating businesses are ideal examples of the perseverance, ingenuity and zeal that define Saint Lucia’s business landscape. She welcomed the Taiwanese exhibitors, adding that their willingness to share their products and services in the local market was commendable. Hon. Hippolyte noted that the theme of this year’s trade expo highlights the values shared by Taiwan and Saint Lucia, which have resulted in a deep sense of mutual trust between the two countries.
“There is a saying that people do business with whom they trust. I think after so many years of collaborative efforts on the part of the Embassy of the Republic of China (Taiwan), it is safe to say that these are people we can trust. In this regard, I also note the confidence placed in our Taiwanese counterparts by our business community, through the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the Taiwan External Trade Development Council, on the one hand, and some of our main private sector organizations, on the other hand, represented by the Saint Lucia Chamber of Commerce and the Saint Lucia Manufacturers Association”, Hon. Hippolyte explained.
Ambassador Chen joined His Excellency Cyril Charles, Acting Governor General; Prime Minister Hon. Philip J. Pierre; and the Hon. Emma Hippolyte for the ribbon cutting at the opening of the trade show last Wednesday.
After the official opening ceremony, Ambassador Chen joined His Excellency Cyril Charles, Acting Governor General, and Mrs. Charles, Prime Minister Hon. Philip J. Pierre. Hon. Emma Hippolyte and other government officials on a tour of booths, where they chatted with exhibitors.
Visitors to this year’s trade show were able to experience several exciting activities, including ‘CaribAsian Experience by Chef Orlando’, ‘Taiwan Make-Up Artist Show’, lucky drawings, and more.