HOUSE RESOLUTION 14
(By Delegates R. Miller, Bates, Boggs, Brewer, Byrd, Campbell, Canestraro, Caputo, Eldridge, Evans, E., Ferro, Fluharty, Frich, Hartman, Hicks, Iaquinta, Lane, Longstreth, Love, Lovejoy, Lynch, Marcum, Maynard, Miley, Moye, Pushkin, Pyles, Robinson, Rodighiero, Sponaugle, Thompson, Ward, and Westfall)
[Introduced March 9, 2018; Referred to the Committee on Rules]
Expressing support for Taiwan’s signing of a Bilateral Trade Agreement with the United States, reaffirming support for Taiwan’s meaningful participation and contribution in international organizations, and expressing a desire for strengthening and expanding sister-state ties between the State of West Virginia and Taiwan.
Whereas, The Republic of China (Taiwan) and the United States have enjoyed a longstanding partnership and share the common values of freedom, democracy, human rights, and the rule of law. In 2018, Freedom House ranked by Taiwan as the second freest country in Asia, and the Heritage Foundation rated Taiwan as third in Asia in terms of economic freedom, demonstrating the strength and vitality of its democratic system and showcasing Taiwan as a beacon of democracy for Asia and beyond; and
Whereas, The State of West Virginia is proud of the sister-state relationship it has enjoyed with Taiwan since August 4, 1980, marked by strong bilateral trade, education and cultural exchange. In 2017, the bilateral trade between West Virginia and Taiwan amounted to nearly $64 million, making Taiwan our seventh-largest Asian trading partner, demonstrating that Taiwan is not only a friendly sister-state of West Virginia but also an important trading partner; and
Whereas, The United States is Taiwan’s second largest trading partner and second-largest destination of Taiwan outward investment. Taiwan is the eleventh largest trading partner of the United States, with bilateral trade reaching $68.2 billion in 2017, eighth largest export destination for U.S. agricultural goods, and, overall, the fourteenth largest export market; and
Whereas, West Virginia welcomes all opportunities for an even closer economic partnership to increase trade and investment and endorses Taiwan’s effort to secure the signing of a U.S.-Taiwan Bilateral Trade Agreement, to boost greater West Virginia exports to Taiwan and to bring in more Taiwanese investment such as the $34 million project which Far Eastern New Century Corporation recently announced; and
Whereas, In the 2016/17 academic year, 21,516 students from Taiwan studied in the U.S., making Taiwan the seventh leading place of origin for students coming to the U.S. and contributed more than $738 million to the U.S. economy, through their spending on tuition, accommodation and living expenses; and
Whereas, Taiwan pursues a “New Southbound Policy” to promote more diverse bilateral and multilateral collaboration with Southeast Asia, South Asia, Australia and New Zealand, serving the best interests of the Asia-Pacific region in the continuation of stability and growth; and
Whereas, Taiwan has been proven to be a very valuable contributor in a broad range of global issues, and it is necessary be granted access to meaningfully participate in various international organizations including the World Health Organization (WHO), International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), United Nation Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), and International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL); therefore, be it
Resolved by the House of Delegates:
That the House of Delegates hereby (reaffirms) its commitment to the strengthening and deepening of the sister-state relationship between Taiwan and the State of West Virginia; (commends) Taiwan’s vibrant full-fledged democracy; (endorses) Taiwan’s efforts to secure the signing of Bilateral Trade Agreement with the United States; and (continues) to support Taiwan’s meaningful participation and contribution in international organizations which impact the health, safety, and well-being of its people, and supports its aspiration to make more contribution in international societies; and, be it
Further Resolved, That the Clerk is hereby directed to forward a copy of this resolution be sent to the Honorable Jim Justice, Governor of West Virginia, and to Mr. Stanley Kao, Representative of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the United States.