Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer is seeking to strengthen bilateral ties with Taiwan, emphasizing the value that Michigan places on its partnership with the country. Governor Whitmer is leading a delegation of economic and trade officials on a visit to Taiwan, making her the first Michigan governor to do so. The purpose of the visit is to enhance exchanges with the Taiwanese government and business community.
During a banquet hosted by Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Lee Chun, Governor Whitmer expressed her desire to deepen interactions with Taiwan and collaborate on promoting supply chain resilience. She highlighted the importance of gaining a deeper understanding of Taiwan’s economic and trade strengths, innovation capabilities, and industrial environment.
Deputy Minister Lee emphasized the close relationship between Taiwan and the United States, describing them as essential partners who both cherish the values of democracy and freedom. He mentioned that Taiwan’s interactions with Michigan have been particularly close, with the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on economic cooperation in high-tech fields such as semiconductors, electric vehicles, and artificial intelligence. This collaboration aims to strengthen partnerships in education, trade, technology, and other areas.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) stated that Michigan and Taiwan are important economic and trade partners. Governor Whitmer’s visit is expected to contribute to a more robust mutual understanding between the two governments and industries. It will also help explore additional cooperation opportunities and deepen the mutually beneficial partnership between Taiwan and Michigan.
In March 2022, Michigan established a bipartisan Taiwan Friendship Caucus, becoming the sixth Midwestern state to do so. The caucus consists of 20 Michigan senators and representatives and is co-chaired by state Senators Stephanie Chang and Jim Runestad, as well as state Representatives Jim Lilly, Kevin Coleman, Ryan Berman, and Kelly Breen.
Overall, Governor Whitmer’s visit to Taiwan underscores the commitment of Michigan to bolster bilateral ties and explore opportunities for collaboration in various sectors. The strengthening of partnerships in economic, trade, and technological fields is expected to benefit both Taiwan and Michigan.