Will it be China or Taiwan?

A brief statement from the Office of the Prime Minister said “the address will focus on the future of diplomatic ties between the Republic of China on Taiwan and St. Lucia”.

The address comes two weeks after Opposition Leader Stephenson King called on the government to release the findings of a Foreign Policy Committee established eight months ago to review, among other issues, the future relationship with Taiwan.

“We are now eight months into this calendar year and the government of Taiwan while still present in St. Lucia and we assume that diplomatic relations are still on-going, we find that government has not actively engaged the Taiwanese in their programmes of bi-lateral cooperation,” King said.

The committee, headed by former prime minister and professor in international relations, Dr. Vaughan Lewis, had been given a three month deadline to review the island’s foreign policy.

The St. Lucia labour Party (SLP) government, which enjoyed diplomatic relations with China, had been critical of the former administration when it broke diplomatic links with Beijing in 2006 in favour of Taipei that China considers a renegade province.

Foreign Affairs Minister Alva Baptiste confirmed that the government had received the committee’s report noting that details would be released after the recommendations were discussed by the Cabinet.

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