The security situation in the Pacific seems far away from Berlin. Taiwan’s Deputy Foreign Minister knows that. But that should not be misleading, says Dr. Roy Chun Lee. His island home also produces critical goods for Europe and China is monitoring Europe’s commitment to Taiwan.
“I would like to stand closer to you,” said Taiwan’s Deputy Foreign Minister Dr. Roy Chun Lee on stage at the Berlin Security Conference, taking two steps forward. “I hope you understand the metaphor.” The island republic needs lasting European engagement in the region. Germany and all other EU countries should work as closely as possible with Taiwan. This is because China is watching very closely to see whether it can rely on Western security assurances for its country. “They are calculating the costs of an attack on Taiwan. So our deterrence strategy must be to drive up these costs,” explained Lee. “Let us stand firm on our commitments. If we don’t, it will send the wrong signal.” China could then decide to attack.
The Deputy Foreign Minister is already describing the security situation in his country in drastic figures. Over five warplanes per day were detected by air surveillance last year. Four Chinese warships are stationed in the international waters around Taiwan. 30 million cyber attacks per month hit the island republic’s public sector. This onslaught also correlates with the Taiwanese election campaign. Elections will be held on January 13, 2024. The Chinese government is interfering “extremely explicitly and loudly” in the election. Just last week, for example, a presidential candidate withdrew his candidacy. The Chinese state was investigating his company. After he withdrew his candidacy, the investigation was ended in exchange for a small fine. “China never disappoints us in this respect,” commented Lee.
But in the event of an attack by communist China on Taiwan, Lee warned of consequences for the West: “European countries are direct stakeholders in this conflict.”
Not only does Taiwan produce semiconductors or chips that are used everywhere and which the West cannot easily replace.Its home country is also the world’s largest exporter of screws.The kitchen shelves would fall off the wall without Taiwan, joked the Deputy Foreign Minister.In addition, there would be connectors for high-speed trains and infrastructure for e-mails.In the event of an attack on Taiwan, it would no longer be possible to send or receive emails, warned the Taiwanese Vice Foreign Minister.
“Let’s unite,” he demanded.”We don’t want to make the same mistakes in the Taiwan Strait that we made in Ukraine.”