TAIPEI – Haiti’s President Jovenel Moise landed in Taiwan on Monday for a five-day state visit, with the latter still reeling from the loss of two diplomatic allies, the Dominican Republic and Burkina Faso, in less than a month.
Moise was visiting with a delegation of 30 senior officials including the Senate President, Joseph Lambert; Chamber of Deputies Speaker, Gary Bodeau; and Foreign Minister, Antonio Rodrigue, according to a Taiwan foreign ministry statement.
The Haitian president was greeted by his Taiwanese counterpart, Tsai Ing-wen, with military honors and then held a meeting with her in the Presidential Office, after which both parties signed a joint statement reaffirming bilateral ties and Taiwan’s commitment towards bilateral aid.
Moise was expected to attend a Haitian investment forum and will visit several government agencies and state-owned companies including Taiwan Power Co. (Taipower), the Mingtan power plant in Nantou and the Taichung Science Park, according to the ministry statement.
For Tsai, Moise’s visit presents an opportunity to show that her government can maintain diplomatic relations, despite Chinese pressure on countries to switch sides.
In accordance with its “One China” policy, which dictates that Taiwan is a breakaway province, Beijing offers financial and political incentives to countries to maintain relations with the mainland rather than with Taipei.
Any country wishing to keep diplomatic channels open with Beijing must reject any formal association with Taipei.
Taiwan and Haiti maintain close bilateral cooperation in areas of infrastructure, agricultural and forestry development, energy, education, environmental protection, medical care and public health, the Taiwanese foreign ministry said.
Only 18 countries have full diplomatic relations with Taiwan, half of which are from Central America and the Caribbean.