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Taiwan Observer Status in the International Civil Aviation Organization

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. ROYCE. I thank the gentlelady for yielding.

I do rise in support of this measure. For too long, Taiwan has been left out of international organizations at the demand of China. Taiwan was denied access to the World Health Organization. It was unable to participate as even an observer for over 40 years. Thankfully, though, that changed in 2009, when a Taiwanese delegation was allowed to observe meetings in Geneva. Infectious disease knows no borders. And it was only proper that that change was made. Congress had long pressed for this action through bills and resolutions.

So it is fitting that we once again take to the floor to press for Taiwan's inclusion in the International Civil Aviation Organization. Despite being home to the world's 18th busiest airport, Taiwan has been kept out of an organization that aims to keep passengers safe.

Indeed, as this resolution finds, Taiwan's exclusion from the ICAO has impeded Taiwan's government from keeping up-to-date with aviation standards and prevented the implementation of new systems and new procedures. The 35 million passengers that travel to and from Taiwan each year are done a great disservice by Taiwan's exclusion.

Mr. Speaker, in a relatively short period of time, Taiwan has gone from poverty to prosperity. It has gone from autocracy to democracy. We have a strong relationship that stretches back for over half a century. Today, our relations remain strong. Passage of this resolution will only serve to strengthen this relationship, and I urge my colleagues to support this measure.

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