TAIPEI (CNA) — Taiwan, the United States, Japan and Guatemala hosted the first international forum under the Global Cooperation and Training Framework (GCTF) in Latin America and the Caribbean region on Wednesday, according to the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT).
The forum, held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic, was hosted by AIT, Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA), the Japan-Taiwan Exchange Association, and the government of Guatemala, AIT said in a press statement issued that day.
“Today’s webinar focused on helping countries deploy digital tools to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic,” AIT said. “Other virtual events in this series will also be related to aspects of the digital economy.”
Topics discussed included the use of technology to overcome workplace challenges posed by the pandemic; the power of data to build resilience to global epidemic threats; and the use of artificial intelligence to limit the spread of the disease, AIT said.
AIT Director Brent Christensen said in his concluding remarks that the forum was one of Taiwan’s ways of contributing to global health, despite being prevented from participating meaningfully in the World Health Organization (WHO).
“The United States remains committed to expanding Taiwan’s international space,” Christensen said.
According to a separate MOFA press release, the forum was the first under the GCTF that focused on Latin America and the Caribbean.
More than 200 health experts, policy makers and scholars from 25 countries participated the forum to share their experiences and thoughts on fighting the pandemic, MOFA added.
The 1st #GCTF by #Taiwan #US #Japan & #Guatemala is a wrap. Participants from 25+ countries shared strategies for #COVID19, good governance & post-pandemic prosperity. Many thanks VM Tsao @juliechungfso AIT Dir. Christensen JTEA Rep. Izumi @PedroBroloGT & @audreyt for the event. pic.twitter.com/sI6rGn0Z0K
— 外交部 Ministry of Foreign Affairs, ROC (Taiwan) 🇹🇼 (@MOFA_Taiwan) September 9, 2020
Julie Chung, the principal deputy assistant secretary of the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs, encouraged the countries involved to expand cooperation and relations with Taiwan, MOFA said.
Guatemalan Foreign Minister Pedro Brolo, Taiwan’s Vice Foreign Minister Miguel Tsao (曹立傑) and Japan-Taiwan Exchange Association Chief Representative Hiroyasu Izumi also offered opening remarks at the event, according to MOFA.
The GCTF is an initiative launched by Taiwan and the U.S. in June 2015 to bring Taiwan’s expertise and leadership to the global stage. Japan later joined the platform as a “full partner” in 2019.