TAIPEI – Paraguayan President Horacio Cartes presided over a seminar for Taiwanese businessmen on Wednesday in which he stressed the mutually beneficial ties and long history of friendship between the two countries as incentives to investment.
With foreign exchange reserves that stood at $423.07 billion at the end of August and abundant private capital, Taiwanese politicians, from the president to the ambassador to Paraguay, have been considering boosting investment in the South American country.
“Paraguay is prepared, and Taiwanese investors should not forget that they have a partner and friend in South America who is waiting for them,” Deputy Foreign Minister Simon Ko told Efe.
After mentioning the intense and vigorous 57-year-old ties between the two countries as well the friendship and appreciation his country feels for Taiwan, Cartes said that he hoped Paraguay becomes a second home for Taiwanese investors.
Paraguay, he added, has much to offer in addition to low production and labor costs, including monetary and legal stability, abundant energy and a platform for accessing the Mercosur trade bloc and the world.
The Latin American leader pointed out that his country’s current laws on private-public partnerships and fiscal responsibility, along with the already approved investment security law offer a stable environment for investors.
C.Y. Wang, the president of Chinese International Economic Cooperation Association (CIECA), emphasized the great opportunities Paraguay offered as an exporter of soybeans to Taiwan and China, and also as a location for the electric automobile industry.
Regarding his country’s current economic situation, Gustavo Leite, Paraguay’s minister of industry and commerce, indicated that five sectors are currently under study for potential investments and five food sectors for exports.
Both the joint communique signed Wednesday as well Thursday’s seminar indicate a shift in the ties between the two countries.
Two points of the communique, 12 and 13, speak of the “reciprocal granting of areas, zones or warehouses for their respective products” to serve as logistic centers for distribution of Paraguayan goods in Asia and those from Taiwan in Latin America.
The seminar was one of President Cartes’ activities during his official visit to Taipei, where he will be attending Taiwan’s national day celebrations on Friday.