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Taiwan-Africa Business Association (TABA) visits OCAC, “to help Taiwanese merchants expanding African market”, says Chen-Yuan Tung
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Jeff Sun, Chairman of TABA, and Allan Chou, President of Ghana Taiwanese Chamber of Commerce, leading a delegation of 7 members, visited the Overseas Community Affairs Council (OCAC) on July 1 and were received by Minister Chen-Yuan Tung; the main agenda of the meeting is to discuss the possibilities of closer partnership with the OCAC and of strengthening the financial services for Taiwanese businesspeople in Africa. Helen Liu, the Manager of Overseas Credit Guarantee Fund (Taiwan) (OCGFund) was also invited to give a briefing and discuss financial serving issues in the meeting.

Chen-Yuan Tung said that today was the second meeting of TABA's visit and that they would continue and extend the discussed issues this time. For example, Manager Liu of OCGFund was invited to give a briefing. Tung added that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs was also actively dealing with the African visa problem to provide more convenient business environment for overseas compatriots and Taiwanese enterprises.

When Tung was post to Thailand, he added, he made efforts to promote the New Southbound Policy and achieved fruitfully. President Tsai also expected to explore business and trade in emerging markets, and help overseas compatriots and Taiwanese enterprises to develop in various areas. In light of this, Tung believes that Africa is a very important region. There are also OCAC staff members stationed in South Africa for serving overseas compatriots and Taiwanese enterprises in Africa, as well as working with Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA) and the Representative Offices to expand business opportunities.

During the meeting, Tung also explained the vision of OCAC to the delegation. Tung set 4 main goals when he took over as Minister, including: serving overseas compatriots with new technologies and modes; deepening the link and cooperation between Taiwan and overseas compatriots all over the world in various fields; assisting overseas compatriots so they can thrive in their countries of residence; and, converging the energy of the overseas compatriots to strengthen Taiwan. In addition, Tung also proposed 2 major strategies to implement the goals. First, the OCAC would play the role of a lever pivot and use Taiwan’s strengths to serve overseas compatriots in healthcare, technology, innovation, business and trade, talent cultivation, culture, and agriculture. Second, the OCAC would build a contact window and an integrated platform for overseas compatriots to contact the OCAC more directly.

Besides, the OCAC currently has three tasks underway: one, the Global Digital Platform of Overseas Compatriot Service came into use on June 16, bringing overseas compatriots 37 LINE contacts with which to contact the OCAC more directly; two, the service manual for Taiwanese businesspeople in 6 Southeastern countries will be issued to help them settle and thrive; last, an online learning platform for overseas compatriots will be built and bring all the teaching materials from education institutions in Taiwan to all overseas compatriots. In addition, Minister Tung will also work on the international healthcare services and the upgrading of the second gen. Overseas Compatriot Card.

Jeff Sun said that the core of TABA is Taiwan, while, on the contrary, the core of Africa Taiwanese Chambers of Commerce is Africa. During his tenure as chairman, he had many interactions with the OCAC in Africa, which gave him the chance to observe the interaction between the OCAC and overseas compatriots from a bystander's point of view. Sun expressed his admiration for what the OCAC had done for the Taiwanese Chambers of Commerce and compatriots around the globe despite limited financial and human resources. He went on to say that he visited the OCAC not only to accompany Allan Chou but also to report that a cooperation agreement between TABA and Africa Taiwanese Chambers of Commerce had been signed to strengthen the bilateral relationship between Taiwan and Africa.

Allan Chou said that Africa is more than just the Republic of South Africa, and communication between other parts of Africa also needs the help of the OCAC. Chen-Yuan Tung replied that the digital platform would hopefully shorten the distance between all areas and the OCAC and enable overseas compatriots to contact the OCAC in the shortest time.
Minister Chen-Yuan Tung said that when he was Ambassador to Thailand, he made his effort to promote the New Southbound Policy and the achievement was plenty. President Tsai Ing-wen also hoped to explore emerging markets and assist overseas compatriots and Taiwanese enterprises in developing in various areas.
Jeff Sun expressed his admiration for the efforts of the OCAC, which served the Taiwanese Chambers of Commerce and the overseas community all over the world despite rather limited financial and human resources.
Chen-Yuan Tung (middle), Jeff Sun (5th from the right), Allan Chou (5th from the left) and members of the delegation.