Taiwan’s APEC rep holds talks with U.S. Vice President Pence

In this photo released by Taiwan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Taiwan's special APEC envoy Morris Chang, left, meets with U.S. Vice President Mike Pence on the Pacific Explorer cruise ship on the sidelines of the APEC Summit, Saturday, Nov. 17, 2018, in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea. (Taiwan Ministry of Foreign Affairs via AP)

Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, Nov. 17-U.S. Vice President Mike Pence met with Taiwan’s envoy to the APEC summit, Morris Chang, on Saturday, in Port Moresby, according to a media report.

At a time when the news media has paid close attention to whether Chang and Pence would meet with each other, officials from Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed the two met at around 1:30 p.m. PNG time and held a discussion.

The talks were held after Pence finished a speech at the APEC CEO Summit, which Chang also attended. The MOFA officials said both met on a cruise ship, where the CEO summit was held.

The conversation with them was about economics,” Pence said. “They were strong supporters of TPP and they made a case for being considered for a free trade agreement. And I assured them we would carry back that ask.’’

Pence declined to say whether the administration would enter trade talks with Taiwan, adding that President Donald Trump would make that decision.

Taiwan’s special envoy Morris Chang smiles at the start of the APEC Economic Leaders Meeting at Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, Saturday, Nov. 17, 2018. (AP Photo/Aaron Favila)

This is the second time Chang has represented Taiwan at the APEC, the first being in 2006 under former Taiwanese President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁). Chang arrived in Port Moresby on Friday.