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President Tsai receives credentials from new Honduras Ambassador Harold Burgos

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President Tsai receives the credentials from new Honduras Ambassador Harold Burgos
New Honduras Ambassador Harold Burgos reviews the honor guard and band of the Republic of China (Taiwan)
President Tsai delivers remarks after receiving the credentials from new Honduras Ambassador Harold Burgos
Ambassador Burgos delivers remarks

On the morning of August 16, President Tsai Ing-wen received the credentials of new Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Honduras to the Republic of China (Taiwan) Harold Burgos. In remarks, President Tsai welcomed Ambassador Burgos to his new post, expressed confidence that he will break new ground in our nations' bilateral relationship, and thanked the government of Honduras for firmly supporting Taiwan's international participation as it continues to speak out for Taiwan around the world. The president further noted that, amid the continued global expansion of authoritarianism, democratic partners must join forces, support one another, and comprehensively strengthen cooperation and exchanges.

A translation of the president's remarks follows:

I am happy to receive the credentials of Ambassador Burgos today, and to welcome him on behalf of the people of Taiwan. Honduras is an important diplomatic ally of Taiwan. In 2017, I led a delegation there, where we were very warmly welcomed by the local residents, and where I myself witnessed the fruits of our countries' wide-ranging bilateral cooperation. Just this past January, I asked Vice President Lai Ching-te to represent me at the inauguration of President Xiomara Castro of Honduras, another demonstration of the deep friendship our countries share.

Honduras and Taiwan are allies who both share a strong commitment to democracy and freedom. I want to specially thank the government of Honduras led by President Castro for firmly supporting Taiwan's international participation, and for continuing to speak out for Taiwan around the world. With the continued global expansion of authoritarianism, democratic partners must join forces, support one another, and comprehensively strengthen cooperation and exchanges.

For many years, Taiwan and Honduras have realized successful cooperation based on the solid foundation of our ties. Our bilateral trade is booming, including in products such as Honduran whiteleg shrimp, beef, and coffee, of which we are particularly fond. These high-quality products from Honduras are all very popular among the Taiwanese people.

In education and culture, our countries have likewise cooperated to great effect. Ambassador Burgos is an ideal witness to the accomplishments of our bilateral educational exchanges. He knows and supports Taiwan, is young and energetic, and I am confident that he will break new ground in our nations' bilateral relationship while advancing the well-being of both our peoples. In closing, let me once again welcome Ambassador Burgos. I wish you all the best, and look forward to what you will accomplish during your tenure in Taiwan.

In his own remarks, Ambassador Burgos stated that it is a high honor to represent Honduras as its ambassador to Taiwan, and that he has a deep sense of the responsibility he is undertaking to deepen ties between Taiwan and Honduras, strengthening bilateral trade and cooperation to bring our two countries closer together.

Ambassador Burgos conveyed to President Tsai a message of greetings from President Castro, saying she is happy that, as pioneering women leaders, they are taking on the great challenges facing our countries at crucial moments in history while protecting our peoples, especially the most vulnerable. Ambassador Burgos relayed President Castro's belief that, with Taiwan's exemplary democratic resilience, solid infrastructure, and advantages in information technology, and as a country that provides welfare, healthcare and education to its people, it is essential to deepen bilateral political, social, and economic relations, given that dialogue and cooperation are indispensable in overcoming humanitarian, health, ecological, and security issues. 

Ambassador Burgos said that Honduras wants to invite Taiwan to be a partner in realizing his country's dreams, for the emancipation of our peoples, the construction of a welfare state, respect for self-determination, and respect for sovereignty and non-interference, with a progressive orientation and against corruption. Stating that the new administration in Honduras will seek justice across society, especially to protect women, children, farmers, indigenous peoples, and other vulnerable groups, the ambassador highlighted the issue of health and education infrastructure as a key national priority and the core of President Castro's agenda to transform Honduras, adding that he is confident of gaining the support of the Republic of China (Taiwan) in that process.

At the end of his remarks, Ambassador Burgos spoke in Mandarin, noting that, as his former home for 5 years, Taiwan holds an important place in his life, and that, on his return after 10 years away, it felt like he had never left at all, and as if he had come home to where his heart had been all along. Saying that his appointment was the result of more than 80 years of close friendship and destiny shared by our countries, the ambassador observed that Taiwan has opened its doors and generously shared the importance of education in international development. Ambassador Burgos also noted that he has witnessed Taiwan's economic miracle for himself, and said that Taiwan's dynamic economic growth, extensive industrialization, and carefully planned development strategies are examples for Honduras to emulate, expressing hope that Honduras can continue its development to reach such levels.

Secretary-General to the President David T. Lee (李大維) and Foreign Minister Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) were also in attendance at the event.

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