The 2018 Taiwan Agricultural Trade Goodwill Mission signed a Letter of Intent with U.S. exporters on Capitol Hill for the purchase of soybeans with a total value of US$1.56 billion.

Following the warm response to the “SelectUSA” campaign with the biggest-ever delegation from Taiwan in June this year, Taiwan has further signaled its resolute intent to “Buy American” by having its soybean importers organize a “2018 Taiwan Agricultural Trade Goodwill Mission” to U.S. to pledge increased purchases of American soybeans. To this end, the “2018 Taiwan Agricultural Trade Goodwill Mission” held a signing ceremony with U.S. Soybean Export Council on Capitol Hill on September 26, 2018.

The goodwill mission carries with a strong message that Taiwan values its reciprocal trade and economic relations with the United States. A total of 11 members of U.S. Congress attended the ceremony and gave their welcoming remarks, including Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA), Rep. Rod Blum (R-IA), Rep. Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL), Rep. Glenn Grothman (R-WI), Rep. Gregg Harper (R-MS), Rep. Steve King (R-IA), Rep. Roger Marshall (R-KS), Rep. Aumua Amata Coleman Radewagen (R-AS), Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) and Rep. Albio Sires (D-NJ).

Representative of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office Amb. Stanley Kao delivered the opening remarks at the signing ceremony. He noted that since 1993, Taiwan maintained its spot at the list of top 7 countries importing U.S. agricultural products. In 2017, Taiwan imported the U.S. agricultural products worth US$3.7 billion, which amounts to around one-quarter of Taiwan’s annual agricultural imports. In addition, from 1998 to 2017, eleven goodwill missions have been dispatched and altogether US agricultural products worth US$ 32 billion had been purchased by Taiwanese importers. Trade missions like this one are a sign of the close Taiwan-US relationship that has developed over decades and reflects Taiwan’s commitment to contribute to the mutual benefits of both countries and prosperity of the Indo-Pacific region.

This year, the Agricultural Trade Goodwill Mission is led by Mr. Yau-Kuen Hung, Chairman of the Taiwan Vegetable Oil Manufacturers Association. The Mission signed a Letter of Intent with the U.S. Soybean Export Council. The total amount of expected purchase will be up to 144 million bushels of US soybeans, worth approximately US$1.56 billion, 30% up than what last year’s goodwill mission pledged.

Senators and Congressmen who were present at the signing ceremony expressed their heartfelt appreciation for this goodwill mission, acknowledging that increased soybean purchases will enhance the export of American agricultural products, benefit American farmers, create jobs, and most importantly make quality agricultural products available to Taiwanese consumers.

After Washington, D.C., the Mission will travel to Minnesota and Iowa. Members of the Goodwill Mission are set to meet with local officials and soybean exporters.

Caption:

Mr. Yau- Kuen Hung, Chairman of Taiwan Vegetable Oil Manufacturers Association and Mr. Wade Cowan, Director of ASA on behalf of the U.S. Soybean Export Council, signed the letter of intent as Ambassador Stanley Kao of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office, Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA), Rep. Gregg Harper (R-MS), Rep. Steve King (R-IA), Rep. Kevin Cramer (R-ND) and Rep. Albio Sires (D-NJ) witnessed.