Taiwan is gearing up to strengthen its diplomatic presence in India by opening the Taipei Economic and Cultural Center (TECC) in Mumbai during the fourth quarter of this year.
In an official statement, Taiwan’s foreign ministry expressed its intention to establish the TECC in order to deepen exchanges and cooperation between the two sides.
“The ROC (Taiwan) government will establish the Taipei Economic and Cultural Center (TECC) in Mumbai in order to further deepen exchanges and cooperation between the two countries.”
The centre will offer visa services, document authentication, and emergency assistance, and will cater to business- people, tourists, and Taiwanese nationals in Maharashtra, Goa, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, and Daman.
The existing Taipei Economic and Cultural Center in Delhi, which has been operating as the de facto embassy of Taiwan in India, was established in 1995.
In 2012, a TECC centre, de facto Taiwanese consulate, was established in the southern Indian city of Chennai. Notably, nearly 60 per cent of Taiwanese businesses investing in and opening factories in India have chosen to establish their operations in southern India.
Ambassador Baushuan Ger, Taiwan’s representative to India, emphasised the significance of the TECC in Mumbai in deepening bilateral exchanges and cooperation between Taiwan and India.
Speaking to WION he stated, “Taiwanese government will establish the Taipei Economic and Cultural Center (TECC) in Mumbai in order to further deepen exchanges and cooperation between the two countries”.
“The TECC in Mumbai will help expand mutually beneficial trade and investment opportunities between Taiwan and India,” he said, adding, “Under Taiwan’s New Southbound Policy, it will also promote exchanges and cooperation in science and technology, education, culture, and people-to-people ties between Taiwan and western India.”
In recent years, economic cooperation between India and Taiwan in trade, investment, and industry has flourished. Bilateral trade has witnessed a nearly six-fold increase, growing from $1.19 billion in 2001 to almost $7.7 billion in 2021.
Currently, around 106 Taiwanese companies have established business operations in India, with a total investment of $1.5 billion in sectors such as information and communication technology, medical devices, and automobile components.
This development comes at a time when India-China relations remain tense due to Beijing’s aggressive actions in Ladakh and Arunachal Pradesh.
The deadly clash in Galwan Valley in 2020 resulted in the death of 20 Indian soldiers, with China reluctantly acknowledging the loss of four of its own soldiers. Since then, the bilateral ties between India and China have deteriorated significantly, marked by continued Chinese provocations, including territorial claims over the Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh.
Taiwan’s decision to expand its diplomatic presence in India indicates the strengthening of ties between the two sides and a shared commitment to deepen cooperation across various sectors.
The opening of the TECC in Mumbai is expected to facilitate increased trade, investment, and people-to-people exchanges, further enhancing ties between Taiwan and India.