On January 28, Kelly Wu-chiao Hsieh, Taiwan’s Representative in the UK, and John Dennis, the UK’s Representative in Taiwan, acting on behalf of Taiwan’s Council of Agriculture (COA) and the UK’s Department for Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), separately signed the “Memorandum of Understanding on Agricultural Cooperation Between The Council of Agriculture, Taiwan and The Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs, United Kingdom” in London and in Taipei. In the future, the two parties will establish a platform for regular dialogue on agricultural cooperation engaging in exchanges and discussions on issues such as agricultural policy, agricultural technology, conservation of fisheries resources, and disease prevention and quarantine measures for plants and animals, with the goal of promoting Taiwan-UK agricultural cooperation and trade in agriproducts.
The COA states that the UK is an agricultural science and technology powerhouse and the trading center of Europe, while Taiwan possesses outstanding cultivation technology in subtropical plants and has successful experiences in agricultural development. There is much the two countries can learn from each other. In the future, under the framework of this Memorandum of Understanding on Agricultural Cooperation, the two sides will engage in mutual visits for study, joint academic research, and industrial interactions and cooperation, to further promote agricultural development and increase trade in agriproducts. Simultaneously, Taiwanese businesses will benefit from the UK’s agricultural technology. They will also cooperate with the UK’s highly developed logistics industry to jointly operate emerging markets in Europe and Asia.
The COA point out that Taiwan has already signed memorandums of understanding on agricultural cooperation with 17 countries around the globe. Other than the UK, Taiwan has signed such agreements with the Netherlands, France, Hungary, and Poland to establish cooperative partnerships in Europe. Given the severe COVID-19 pandemic sweeping the world, agricultural agencies in Taiwan and the UK have been forced to deal with new conditions in agricultural production and trade shaped by the pandemic. Taiwan will work through the newly established cooperation platform to continue on engaging in agricultural dialogue with the UK, and the two sides will work jointly together to create mutually beneficial connections with respect to strengthen policy, technology, and industrial interactions in agriculture-related fields.