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Lithuania set to open representative office in Taiwan in early 2022

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Minister of the Economy and Innovation of Lithuania Aušrinė Armonaitė. Photo from her Facebook page

London, Oct. 27 (CNA) Lithuania's representative office in Taiwan is scheduled to open in early 2022, Aušrinė Armonaitė, the country's economy and innovation minister, said Wednesday.

Armonaitė made the announcement in a news conference held on Wednesday with Taiwan's National Development Council Minister Kung Ming-hsin (龔明鑫), who led a 66-member delegation which had arrived in the Baltic state a day earlier.

In late September, Lithuania's parliament passed a legal revision that gave the green light to the country to open a representative office in countries like Taiwan with which the Baltic state does not have formal diplomatic relations.

At the time when the law amendment was passed, Armonaitė had said the move by the parliament will allow the country to explore overseas business opportunities by forging closer economic ties with countries such as Taiwan.

On Wednesday, Armonaitė said she did not rule out the possibility of Taiwan setting up a semiconductor production site in her country, expecting that with electric vehicles and smart technologies becoming more widespread, the demand for semiconductors will increase.

To make sure of a stable semiconductor supply chain, Armonaitė said it is necessary for her country to have domestic production.

In response, Kung said he thought it would be possible for Taiwan to enter semiconductor production in the Baltic country.

According to Armonaitė, 80 percent of Lithuania's gross domestic product comes from exports so the Baltic country hopes it can increase outbound sales to Taiwan.

In addition, Armonaitė said she also hopes Taiwan will invest in her country.

Last year, exports to Taiwan accounted for only 0.1 percent of Lithuania's total exports, while imports from Taiwan made up 0.2 percent of the Baltic country's total, according to Armonaitė.

Taiwan's delegation will stay in Lithuania until Friday. During their time in the country, the delegation will visit a free economic zone located in Kaunas in the central part of the country, and a life science center in Vilnius University.

On Wednesday, the Taiwan delegation and Lithuania held an investment forum, in which both sides signed six memorandums of understanding covering a wide range of cooperation including on semiconductors, life science, biotech, laser and satellite technologies, as well as financial technologies.

Before arriving in Lithuania, the Taiwan delegation visited Slovakia from Oct. 21-23 and the Czech Republic from Oct. 23-26 before heading to Lithuania to boost trade and economic ties with Central and Eastern European countries.

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