File Photo

Taiwan President Tsai with President Tommy Remengesau Jr

Palau received an outpouring of gifts from Taiwan intended for the development of its health, security, tourism, and cultural sectors during the state visit of President Tsai Ing-wen on March 21-24.

President Tsai, who was visiting the country for the first time, had unveiled along with her delegations the modern medical equipment worth over two million New Taiwan Dollars donated to Palau’s Ministry of Health (MOH) by the Shin Kong Wu Ho-Su Memorial Hospital. The equipment will be used to furnish the new operating room in Palau’s only national hospital, the Belau National Hospital in Koror.

Tsai also announced that Taiwan’s flag carrier, China Airlines, will increase flights to and from Palau to four times a week, a move seen to help increase outflow of tourists to the island nation after it suffered from tourism downturn in the past few years.

A brand new small patrol boat was also handed over to Palau’s Ministry of Justice (MOJ),the cabinet office that covers marine law enforcement, as part of the maritime cooperation agreement signed by the two nations on March 22.

Taiwan Minister of the Council of Indigenous Peoples (CIP)Icyang Parod (夷將‧拔路兒) also signed an agreement for cultural cooperation with the Belau National Museum on March 23.

Tsai’s visit to Palau is the first leg of a series of state visits to its Pacific allies. She is currently in Nauru and will also head to the Republic of Marshall Islands afterwards.

Taiwan has been one of the most generous allies of Palau. It has diplomatic relationship with Palau for 20 years now. (Rhealyn C. Pojas)