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Congratulating President Ma Ying-Jeou on His Re-Election

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

Mr. SAM JOHNSON of Texas. Mr. Speaker, I stand today to recognize and congratulate Ma Ying-jeou, President of Taiwan, as he continues to honorably serve the people of the Republic of China. On January 14, 2012, through a free and fair election, the people of Taiwan reelected Ma Ying-jeou to serve a second term as president, continuing the country's commitment to a strong and stable democratic government.

Over the past century Taiwan has increasingly become an influential free-market democracy in the Asia-Pacific region. Now a model government to surrounding countries, Taiwan continues to play a vital role in maintaining peace and stability in the region and has experienced sustained economic growth and sociopolitical development in recent years.

As a result, U.S-Taiwan relations have become especially close. Our shared economic, cultural, political, and strategic values coupled with our mutual interest in forging strong ties have encouraged innovation and growth between our nations. U.S. arms sales to Taiwan have more than doubled over the past several years and on December 22, 2011, the U.S. State Department announced Taiwan's nomination for inclusion into the Visa Waiver Program. Officials estimate acceptance into this program will increase the more than 400,000 Taiwanese citizens who visit the United States each year by 20 to 30 percent.

As a member of the Congressional Taiwan Caucus, I commend President Ma for his exemplary leadership and his efforts to advance and ensure regional stability and peace. President Ma and his administration have worked tirelessly to develop a strong strategy of rapprochement which upholds our shared values of freedom, democracy, and the rule of law. I look forward to the future as we continue to work together to seek mutual best interests for both the United States and Taiwan.

Mr. Speaker, I would ask that my colleagues join me in congratulating President Ma Ying-jeou and wish him continued success as he begins his second term as president of the Republic of China.

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