Tuesday May 22, 2018
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YOUR MAJESTY THE INDLOVUKAZI,

YOUR EXCELLENCY PRESIDENT TSAI OF THE REPUBLIC OF CHINA (TAIWAN) AND YOUR DISTINGUISHED DELEGATION,

EMAKHOSIKATI,

YOUR ROYAL HIGHNESSES,

PRIME MINISTER,

COUNCILLORS,

CHIEFS,

CHIEF JUSTICE,

DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER,

CABINET MINISTERS,

PRESIDING OFFICERS AND MEMBERS OF BOTH HOUSES OF PARLIAMENT,

MEMBERS OF THE DIPLOMATIC CORPS,

REGIONAL ADMINISTRATORS

DISTINGUISHED GUESTS,

LADIES & GENTLEMEN,

SIYANIVUSELA NONKHE BEKUNENE LAPHA EMANDVULO GRAND HALL

INTRODUCTION

LET ME TAKE THIS OPPORTUNITY YOUR EXCELLENCY TO EXTEND A VERY WARMWELCOME TO YOU AND THE ENTIRE DELEGATION TO THE KINGDOM OF ESWATINI.

IT IS OUR PLEASURE TO HOST YOU, YOUR EXCELLENCY, TO THIS AUSPICIOUS OCCASION, MARKING OUR GOLDEN JUBILEE AND THE CONFERMENT OF A MEDAL OF HONOUR FOR YOUR DISTINGUISHED LEADERSHIP.

TRIPLE CELEBRATIONS

AS YOU ARE AWARE YOUR EXCELLENCY, THIS IS A TRIPLE CELEBRATIONS BECAUSE WE ARE CELEBRATING 50 YEARS SINCE OUR KINGDOM ATTAINED INDEPENDENCE ON SEPTEMBER 6, 1968 - A DAY THAT USHERED A NEW DAWN IN OUR HISTORY AND SET US ON COURSE TO CHARTING A NEW DESTINY FOR OUR PEOPLE AND COUNTRY.

THIS OCCASION ALSO MARKS 50 YEARS OF HEALTHY DIPLOMATIC RELATIONS BETWEEN THE KINGDOM OF E-SWATINI AND THE REPUBLIC OF CHINA (TAIWAN).

THIRDLY, I AM DEEPLY HUMBLED TO HAVE BEEN BLESSED WITH CELEBRATING FIVE DECADES OF LIFE, AS A TRIPLET TO THE COUNTRY’S INDEPENDENCE AND OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH TAIWAN.

BILATERAL RELATIONS

OURRELATIONS HAVE CONTRIBUTED IMMENSELY TO THE DEVELOPMENT OF OUR COUNTRY IN A VARIETY OF SECTORS.

OVER THE YEARS, PERIODIC COOPERATION AGREEMENTS HAVE BEEN SIGNED BY THE TWO COUNTRIES TO GUIDE COOPERATION IN AGREED AREAS OF MUTUAL INTEREST, IN PURSUIT OF SOCIO-ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT FOR THE TWO ECONOMIES.

OUR BILATERAL COOPERATION IS AIMED AT PROMOTING AN EXTENSIVE, CLOSE AND LONG-TERM MUTUALLY BENEFICIAL RELATIONSHIP.

THE EXCHANGE VISITS, WHICH TAKE PLACE AT HEAD OF STATE, GOVERNMENT AND BUSINESS LEVELS, ARE A CLEAR INDICATION THAT OUR MUTUAL FRIENDSHIP IS VERY STRONG.

THIS VISIT, YOUR EXCELLENCY, WILL NO DOUBT ADD THE REQUIRED IMPETUS IN MAKING SURE THAT THESE RELATIONS GROW FROM STRENGTH TO STRENGTH, FOR THE BENEFIT OF OUR FUTURE GENERATIONS.

SUPPORT FROM THE REPUBLIC OF CHINA ON TAIWAN – COOPERATING AGREEMENT FOR 2018 - 2022

LAST YEAR, WE IDENTIFIED PROJECTS WHICH THE KINGDOM HAS EARMARKED TO RE-INVIGORATE OUR ASPIRATIONS TOWARDS THE ACHIEVEMENT OF VISION 2022.

THE NEW AGREEMENT SUPPORTS SOME OF THE FOLLOWING SECTORS:

-         RURAL ELECTRIFICATION PROGRAMME,

-         AGRICULTURE,

-         CONSTRUCTION OF WATER AND SANITATION FACILITIES IN RURAL COMMUNITIES,

-         PREPARATION FOR THE UP-COMING NATIONAL ELECTIONS,

-         SUPPORT FOR SMALL HOLDER DAIRY PRODUCERS,

-         STRENGTHENING CANCER DIAGNOSIS AND TREATMENT IN THE COUNTRY’S HEALTH FACILITIES,

-         CONTINUATION OF THE REHABILITATION OF THE MBABANE GOVERNMENT HOSPITAL,

-         INTERNATIONAL CONVENTION CENTRE AND THE HOTEL,

-         THE TAIWAN MEDICAL TEAM,

-         SCIENCE PARK AT NOKWANE, WHICH UPON COMPLETION, WILL OPEN OPPORTUNITIES FOR BUSINESSES FROM TAIWAN TO INNOVATE AND GENERATE BILLIONSOF EMALANGENI INREVENUE.

AIRCRAFT

WHILE THE KINGDOM WAS SOURCING AN AIRCRAFT, WE WOULD LIKE TO THANK THE SIGNIFICANT CONTRIBUTION FROM TAIWAN IN MAKING THIS A REALITY.YOUR CONTRIBUTION HAS NOW ENSURED THAT THE ROYAL SWAZI NATIONAL AIRWAYS CORPORATION IS REVIVED.

WE WOULD ALSO LIKE TO APPRECIATE THE SUPPORT FROM CHINA AIRLINES, WHICH WE HOPE WILL NOT BE THE LAST, BUT A LONG TERM RELATIONSHIP.

WE INVITE TAIWAN AIRLINES TO MAKE FULL USE OF OURNEW INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT WHICH PROVIDES A GATEWAY TO NUMEROUS DESTINATIONS.

WE ALSO HOPE THAT OUR NATIONAL AIRWAYS CAN WORK TOGETHER WITH CHINA AIRWAYS, WITH A VIEW OF FORMING PARTNERSHIPS AND EXCHANGE OF EXPERTISE IN THE AVIATION INDUSTRY.

YOUR EXCELLENCY,DURING YOUR VISIT WE HOPE YOU WILL FIND TIME TO WITNESS THE HUGE IMPACT THESE PROGRAMMES HAVE MADE IN THE LIVES OF OUR PEOPLE. THIS IS A REMARKABLE PARTNERSHIP THAT HAS VERY STRONG VALUES AND INTEREST.

SOME MEMBERS OF YOUR DELEGATION COME FROM THE PRIVATE SECTORAND GOVERNMENT, AND SUCH A TRIP WILL ENABLE THEM TO WITNESS THE VARIOUS INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITIES AVAILABLE IN THE KINGDOM.

TAIWAN IS A COUNTRY OF ENTREPRENEURS WITH UNIQUE CAPACITY AND WE WELCOME THEM WITH AN ASSURANCE THAT OUR KINGDOM REMAINS IDEAL FOR INVESTMENT.WE REMAIN AN OASIS OF PEACE AND STABILITY WITH APREDICTABLE INVESTMENT CLIMATE.

WE HAVE RECENTLY ENACTED A SPECIAL ECONOMIC ZONE ACT, WHOSE PRIMARY OBJECTIVE IS TO ATTRACTINVESTMENTS FOR EXPORT.

TARGETED BUSINESSES ARE THOSE IN LINE WITH THE NATIONAL ECONOMIC AND INDUSTRIAL POLICIES.QUALIFYING INVESTMENTS WILL RECEIVE A 20 YEAR TAX HOLIDAY AND 5% TAX THEREAFTER.

THOUGH NOT ON RECIPROCAL TERMS, IT IS OUR HOPE THAT THE TRADE AGREEMENT AND THE ENACTMENT OF THIS ACT WILL OPEN A NEW WINDOW OF OPPORTUNITIES FOR OUR TWO COUNTRIES.

ACADEMIC SUPPORT

THROUGH THE ACADEMIC COOPERATION PROGRAMME, THE KINGDOM HAS BEEN ABLE TO INVEST IN HUMAN RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT, IN LINE WITH OUR NATIONAL VISION POLICY OF ENSURING ALL EMASWATI ARE EDUCATED BY 2022.

NOT ONLY HAVE YOU WELCOMED OUR STUDENTS INTO YOUR COUNTRY, BUT YOU HAVE CONTINUOUSLY INCREASED THEIR GLOBAL UNDERSTANDING AND CREATED A HOMELY ENVIRONMENT FOR WHICH WE ARE DEEPLY GRATEFUL.

CURRENTLY WE HAVE 260 EMASWATI ENROLLED IN DIFFERENT TAIWANESE UNIVERSITIES. A MEMBER OF THE ROYAL FAMILY IS AMONG THOSE STUDENTS WHO ARE ABOUT TO GRADUATE THIS YEAR.

SUPPORT OF NATIONAL EVENTS

YOUR EXCELLENCY, WE WISH TO ACKNOWLEDGE AND APPLAUD YOUR GOVERNMENT’S SUPPORT DURING OUR NATIONAL EVENTS AND CULTURAL CEREMONIES.

WHEN WE WERE FACING DIFFICULT TIMES DUE TO FOOD SHORTAGESCAUSED BY DROUGHT, YOU WERE THERE TO PROVIDE FOOD AID.

WE ALSO APPRECIATE THE SUPPORT THAT WAS GIVEN TO THE KINGDOM DURING THE SADC SUMMIT AND FOR THESE TRIPLE CELEBRATIONS, 50/50/50.

NATIONAL ELECTIONS

YOUR EXCELLENCY, YOUR VISIT PRECEDES OUR NATIONAL ELECTIONS WHICH WE HOPE WILL BE PEACEFUL AND MEET THE ASPIRATIONS OF EMASWATI.

IN, 2013, THE GOVERNMENT OF TAIWAN SUPPORTED US DURING OUR NATIONAL ELECTIONS AND WE ARE ALSO PLEASED THAT EVEN IN THIS YEAR’S ELECTIONS, YOU ARE GOING TO CONTRIBUTE TOWARDS ITS SUCCESS.

THESE ARE TRAITS OF A TRUE FRIENDSHIP WHICH, LIKE A TREE, IS NOT MEASURED BY HOW TALL IT HAS GROWN, BUT BY HOW DEEP THE ROOTS HAVE GONE.

 

 

CONFERMENT OF HONOUR

IN RECOGNITION OF THIS VISIT AND SUPPORT, I WOULD LIKE TO CONFER UPON THE PRESIDENT THE ORDER OF THE ELEPHANT”.

THE ORDER OF THE ELEPHANT SIGNIFIES THE HIGHEST LEVEL OF HONOUR THE KINGDOM CONFERS UPON FEMALE HEADS OF STATE AND PRESIDENT TSAI-INGWE IS THE FIRST FOREIGN HEAD OF STATE TO BE THE RECIPIENT OF THIS MEDAL.

THIS IS IN HONOUR OF THE DISTINGUISHED ROLE YOU HAVE PLAYED IN THE PROMOTION OF PEACE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT IN TAIWAN.

THROUGH YOUR LEADERSHIP, TAIWAN HAS CONTINUED TO GROW ECONOMICALLY AND IS RANKED AMONG THE LEADING COUNTRIES IN ICT.

YOU HAVE ALSO BEEN SUCCESFULL IN MINIMISING LOSS OF LIVES DUE TO THE HIGH STANDARD OF YOUR DISASTER MANAGEMENT STRATEGIES, JUST TO MENTION A FEW.

IT ALSO ACKNOWLEDGES THE CONTRIBUTION YOUR COUNTRY HAS MADE IN THE DEVELOPMENT OF OUR KINGDOM IN VARIOUS SECTORS, SOME OF WHICH I HAVE MENTIONED ABOVE.

CONCLUSION

IN CONCLUSION, PRESIDENT TSAI, THE KINGDOM OF ESWATINI BELIEVES THAT PEACE AND STABILITY ARE THE CORNERSTONE OF GLOBAL PEACE. WE STRONGLY BELIEVE IN DIALOGUE AS A NATION.

AS FAR AS WE KNOW, TAIWAN IS A RESPONSIBLE MEMBER OF THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY. THEREFORE,I WISH TO MAINTAIN AND REAFFIRM OUR COMMITMENT TO SUPPORTING AND LOBBYING FOR THE INCLUSIVE PARTICIPATION OF TAIWAN WITHIN THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY.

YOUR EXCELLENCY, I WISH YOU AND YOUR ENTIRE DELEGATION A GREAT TIME IN THE KINGDOM WHERE YOU WILL EXPLORE THE BEAUTY OF OUR COUNTRY, KINDNESS OF AND UTMOST RECEPTION BY ALL THE PEOPLE OF ESWATINI.

YOU ARE THE FOURTHPRESIDENT FROMTAIWAN TO VISIT OUR KINGDOM, BUT WE ARE HONOURED THAT YOU WILL SPEND MORE DAYS THAN ALL THE OTHERS. WE DO HOPE YOU WILL VISIT US AGAIN PRETTY SOON.

WE TRUST THAT DURING THE LAST LEG OF YOUR TRIP, YOU WILL BE ABLE TO ENJOY AND APPRECIATE HOW WE CONSERVE NATURE IN THE KINGDOM OF ESWATINI.

WE HOPE THAT THE PROGRAMME AND HOSPITALITY PREPARED FOR YOU WILL BE MOST ENJOYABLE.

 

I THANK YOU, MAY THE ALMIGHTY GOD BLESS US ALL.

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