Ambassador Xu Youdian, the newly appointed General Representative of the Republic of China to Australia, gave an exclusive interview to The Epoch Times and New Tang Dynasty after delivering a speech to overseas Chinese at the Maplewood Restaurant in Brisbane on September 13, 2023. (Nielsen/The Epoch Times)
[The Epoch Times, November 03, 2023](Epoch Times reporter Xia Chujun compiled and reported from Sydney, Australia) On the eve of Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese’s upcoming visit to China, Ambassador Xu Youdian, General Representative of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office of Taiwan in Australia It warned that Beijing “is the least trustworthy partner” and said Canberra should share intelligence with Taipei, Tokyo, Seoul and Manila to improve regional security.
Ambassador Xu Youdian welcomed the Australian Prime Minister’s official visit to China this weekend, but said that Chinese Communist Party leaders are already using their economic power to spread their political messages to other regions.
“The People’s Republic of China (CCP) always likes to weaponize trade to attack other economies.” Ambassador Xu told the Australian Financial Review.
After Tsai Ing-wen, chairman of Taiwan’s Democratic Progressive Party, came to power in 2016, Beijing cut off exchanges with Taiwan. Recently, after Taiwanese Vice President Lai Ching-te, who is considered to be expected to win the general election in January next year, returned from a short visit to the United States, Beijing banned the import of Taiwanese mangoes on the grounds that it found pests.
Ambassador Xu Youdian said: “(If) the people of Taiwan elect a president who is not favored by Beijing, all goodwill (from Beijing) will be gone.
“Our experience shows that dealing with China can sometimes be very dangerous.
“Of course, you want to live in peace with it, but I would say it’s the least trustworthy companion.”
The Australian Prime Minister will pay an official visit to China from November 4 to 7. This is the first visit by a prime minister since 2016.
Taiwan’s Foreign Minister Joseph Wu told The Australian Financial Review last week that Beijing may take advantage of warming ties with Western democracies to try to isolate Taipei and bring it under Communist rule.
Urges the Australian Prime Minister to maintain peace across the Taiwan Strait
Ambassador Xu also urged the Australian Prime Minister to emphasize the importance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait and “oppose any act to unilaterally change the status quo through force or coercion.”
“We believe this is an important message that the Prime Minister should convey to Beijing when he visits China,” he said.
“If there is a conflict in the Taiwan Strait, all commercial flows will be interrupted, all international transportation will be interrupted. This is not in anyone’s interest.”
Ambassador Xu said if Beijing fully invades Taiwan, he hopes Australia can improve regional stability by sharing intelligence with Taiwan and countries such as Japan, South Korea and the Philippines.
“I think it’s necessary for countries that share the same vision to share information,” he said.
“There is no evidence that the risk is imminent… but we always have to remember that our big neighbor (Beijing) is not that friendly. So no matter what, we have to be prepared.”
Looking forward to Taiwan and Macao strengthening cooperation in key mineral resources
The diplomat once served as director of the North American Department of Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and took up a post in Australia in August. He said Taiwan wanted to have more engagement with Australia on critical minerals.
He said: “I know Australia has been negotiating with countries such as Japan and South Korea, but… Australia and Taiwan are complementary and can cooperate when it comes to critical minerals.”
“Taiwan can invest more in Australia, carry out some joint projects, use key minerals to process final products, or set up a production line in Australia.”
Editor in charge: Zong Minqing#
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