Taiwan hopes to sign a trade deal with Britain and deepen cooperation with new Prime Minister Rishi Sunak's government, President Tsai Ing-wen told a British minister visiting Taipei on Wednesday in defiance of Chinese demands such trips stop, APA reports citing Reuters.
Taiwan views Britain as an important democratic partner and has been heartened by its concern over recent Chinese military exercises near the island and support for its participation in international organisations, most of which Taiwan is excluded from due to China's opposition.
China claims democratically governed Taiwan as its own territory and strongly objects to any official interactions between the island and foreign governments, believing it to be support for Taiwan's desire to be recognised as its own country.
Meeting Minister of State for Trade Greg Hands at the presidential office in Taipei, Tsai thanked Britain for its long-term support of Taiwan's international participation and peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait.
"We attach great importance to the British proposal to promote an enhanced trade partnership between Taiwan and Britain," Tsai said.