Taiwan donates 18.2 million US dollars to Central American group
Taiwan has donated 18.2 million US dollars to the Central American Integration System (SICA) to be spent on cooperation projects, Taiwan's Central News Agency (CNA) said on Wednesday, dpa reported.
Taiwan signed the agreement on six cooperation projects at SICA's foreign ministers' meeting held in the Honduran capital Tegucigalpa on Tuesday, CNA said.
Costa Rica, which is a SICA member but cut diplomatic ties with Taiwan to recognize China in June 2007, did not send its foreign minister to the SICA meeting.
Quoting Honduran Foreign Minister Angel Edmundo Orellana Mercado, CNA said the pact covers improving agriculture and fishery, wiping out livestock diseases and promoting social developments.
The 18.2 million US dollars of aid from Taiwan is to be shared by all SICA members except Costa Rica, CNA said.
Launched in 1991 and based in Tegucigalpa, SICA is aimed at promoting Central America's economic integration and social development. It has observer status at the United Naitons and maintains a permanent office at the UN.
SICA members include Belize, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama and El Salvador. Except Costa Rica, all the SICA members have diplomatic ties with Taiwan, which is recognized by only 23 countries in the world.
Taiwan has offered generous aid to its diplomatic allies to prevent them from switching recognition to China, which sees Taiwan as a breakaway province.
SICA also has one associate member - Dominica - three regional observers - Mexico, Chile, Brazil - and three extra-regional observers - Taiwan, Spain, and Germany.