March 20, 2008
Nevis Premier Parry bade farewell to outgoing Ambassador of the Republic of China on Taiwan in the Federation His Excellency Mr. John K Liu and Mrs. Liu, during a face-to-face discussion at his Bath Hotel office on Monday, March 18, 2008.
Mr. Parry expressed to Ambassador Liu that he was not happy to learn that his diplomatic tenure was about to end. He extended gratitude to the Ambassador for his government’s overall contribution to Nevis and for its future prospects to enhance cooperation between the two countries and by extension, Nevis.
The Premier further spoke of the areas in which Nevis and Taiwan had the greatest exchanges.
“Mr. Ambassador, I must tell you that we had a very great relationship and we enjoyed many good times together. Your country has been very supportive to St. Kitts and Nevis and you supported Nevis both in Agriculture and in the area of financing the proposed Fine Arts Theatre,” said Premier Parry.
Premier Parry presented Ambassador Liu with a token of appreciation. A hand crafted clock depicting the map of Nevi, on behalf of the government and people of Nevis for his country’s invaluable contribution to the development of the island.
He told Mr. Liu when he would have returned to Taiwan, his frequent glance at the face of the clock would remind him of Nevis. He further added that he would hope for the opportunity to arise for them to meet with him.
In an interview with the Department of Information, Ambassador Liu expressed gratitude to the Nevis Island Administration (NIA) and the people of Nevis for the hospitality they had offered him and Mrs. Liu during their stay.
He extended special thanks to Premier Parry for his outstanding cooperation, which enabled him to accomplish his duties.
“My job was to promote friendship and good relations and cooperation between the two countries. During my three years, St. Kitts and Nevis has undergone economic transformation after the closing of the sugar industry and Taiwan was involved in the transformation process,” he said.
He further remarked that he was proud of the international status the country had gained over the years and that during his tenure he was instrumental in bringing some of the key projects to fruition that had catapulted St Kitts and Nevis onto the world stage.
He named three pertinent projects in that regard. He mentioned the Warner Park Cricket Stadium that was constructed to host world Cup Cricket in 2007. The Athletic Stadium in Bird Rock, which would host the upcoming 2008 Carifta games and the Informational Technology Centre (ITC). He indicated that although the facility was located on St. Kitts, it would also accommodate students from Nevis who would pursue computer training.
The Ambassador also pointed out two proposed projects for Nevis that would be financed by the Taiwanese government. The proposed projects he referred to were the US $1million state of the art multi-purpose Performing Arts Centre and Community Centre that would be constructed in Charlestown.
Ambassador Liu further stated that his government provided a grant of US $2 million soft loans to the NIA.
In addition, Ambassador Liu spoke about one area of expertise that his government had given to farmers on Nevis. He indicated that his government sent a very capable technician by the name of Dr. Wong to Nevis, who was given the task to identify high potential farmers on the island and to equip them with the technical skills necessary to operate a commercial farm that would increase their output on fruits and vegetables.
He specifically referred to the abundant summer mango season which he felt was insufficiently used for economic benefit for the people of Nevis. He indicated that the use of Agro Processing would change the avoidable loss of the fruit, which he had observed during the mango season.
He however assured the People of Nevis that his government was dedicated to provide adequate training in the area of Agro Processing techniques that would enable farmers to reach their true farming potential.
He further reminisced about the Taipei Folk Dance Theater performers that visited the Federation in August of 2006 and performed exquisite dance techniques that best represented the Taiwanese culture. He said he had arranged the performance as a compliment to Premier Parry for his 2006 election victory.
Mr. Liu promised Premier Parry another performance by the Taipei Folk Dance Theatre for 2009. He also indicated that he had high expectations that the Taipei dancers would do their next performance on Nevis at the newly constructed Performing Arts Theatre.
Meantime, the Ambassador revealed that he would return to the Republic of Taiwan on March 26, 2008, which would signal the end of his three-year diplomatic stint on St Kitts and Nevis.
Ambassador Liu wrapped up the interview with words of adulation about his successor. He described him as being young and dynamic and despite the change of Ambassador, he was certain the cooperation demonstrated by Taiwan and St Kitts, Nevis would continue to be strong.
While on Nevis the delegation also visited Deputy Premier and Minister of Culture Hon. Hensley Daniel and Minister of Agriculture Hon. Robelto Hector.
The incoming Ambassador for the Embassy of the Republic of Taiwan on St Kitts and Nevis, Mr. Wu Rong-Chuan is slated to be transferred from Atlanta, Georgia to St Kitts on March 27, 2008. He also had previous diplomatic duties at the Embassy for the Republic of Taiwan, on the island of Dominica.