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Rubio on Secretary Azar’s Official Trip to Taiwan

Aug 10, 2020 | Press Releases

Miami, FL — U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) issued the following statement as Secretary of Health & Human Services  (HHS) Alex Azar is in Taiwan on an official visit. During Secretary Azar’s trip to Taiwan, the U.S. announced it will sign a memorandum of understanding to expand collaboration between HHS and the Taiwanese Ministry of Health and Welfare. 

“I applaud Secretary Azar’s trip to Taiwan, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. Two democracies meeting in each other’s respective capitals should be the norm.  Taiwan is an important U.S. ally, and has been a model of how to respond to a global health crisis.  Even as the Chinese Communist Party seeks to isolate Taiwan diplomatically, Taiwan remains committed to democratic values and regional security. Secretary Azar’s trip follows the policy established under my Taiwan Travel Act (PL 115-135), which President Trump signed into law in 2018. I look forward to more high-level engagement with Taiwan to strengthen the relationship for years to come.”

Timeline of Rubio’s work on the Taiwan Travel Act, which allows high-level officials of the U.S. and Taiwan to meet in each other’s respective capitals.

  • April 10, 2019: Rubio calls to reaffirm U.S.-Taiwan relationship on 40th anniversary of Taiwan Relations Act.
  • March 16, 2018 – President Trump signs Rubio’s Taiwan Travel Act. 
  • March 1, 2018 – Senate passes Rubio’s Taiwan Travel Act. 
  • February 8, 2018 – Senate Foreign Relations Committee passes Rubio’s Taiwan Travel Act.
  • May 4, 2017: Rubio reintroduced the Taiwan Travel Act.
  • September 27, 2016: Rubio introduced the Taiwan Travel Act.

Rubio is Cochair of the bipartisan and bicameral Congressional-Executive Commission on China (CECC), the Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations’ Subcommittee that oversees human rights, and is a member of the Subcommittee on East Asia, the Pacific, and International Cybersecurity Policy.