Today the Washington State Senate recognized the strong relationship between the people of the state of Washington and the people of Taiwan by adopting Senate Resolution 8612, sponsored by Sen. Jim Honeyford.
“It’s really an honor to sponsor this resolution for our friends in the Republic of China,” Honeyford said. “Our friends in Taiwan are major trading partners. We export 1.8 billion dollars’ worth of products to Taiwan and they are the fourth largest of our markets in Asia. They rank in the top three in beef, wheat and apples. When I arrived in Taipei in 2006, one of the first things I saw was a big display of Washington apples for sale. That made a big impression on me.”
While speaking in support of his resolution, Honeyford also talked about the enduring friendship between the people of Taiwan and the people of Washington.
“In addition to trade, the people of Taiwan have been good neighbors and good friends to Washingtonians,” said Honeyford, R-Sunnyside. “They share our values, invest in our state’s businesses and are there for us in our time of need.”
Honeyford pointed out that the people of Taiwan generously donated more than 2,000,000 medical face masks to the people of the United States in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, including 100,000 masks for use by medical personnel, first responders, and election-staff workers in Washington. The masks were delivered to the state on behalf of the Taiwanese people and received by Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman on May 8, 2020.
As Honeyford’s resolution states, “the people of the State of Washington and the people of Taiwan are bonded by their shared commitment to democracy, human rights, the rule of law, and a free market economy.”
Daniel Kuo-ching Chen, who is Director General of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office (TECRO) in Seattle, has been instrumental in building the relationship between Washington and Taiwan. TECRO was established pursuant to the Taiwan Relations Act, for the purpose of promoting and strengthening economic, cultural, educational and other bilateral ties between the United States and the Republic of China (Taiwan).
“We are very fortunate to have Director General Chen in Seattle,” Honeyford told his colleagues. “He is well-educated, experienced and represents the Republic of China well.”