THE City of Castries, through the Office of the Mayor, was the recipient of 24,000 medical masks and US$3,000 last week.
The donation was made on behalf of Taipei City, a sister city of Castries, by Taiwanese Ambassador His Excellency Peter Chen at a short ceremony at the Embassy of the Republic of China (Taiwan) in Rodney Bay.
The masks and US$3,000 were donated, to help the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic and to provide school supplies for institutions within Castries.
Ambassador Chen highly commended Castries Mayor Peterson Francis for his care and actions taken to address the needs of citizens, and expressed his appreciation to Dr. Wen-je Ko, Mayor of the Taipei City, for his positive response to the needs of Saint Lucia.
“The donations demonstrate love from the citizens of Taipei for Castries and how they cherish the friendship between the two sister cities,” stated Ambassador Chen.
He further stressed that Taiwan and Saint Lucia are not just partners during times of prosperity but also true friends during hard times.
In a letter addressed to Mayor Francis, Dr. Wen-je Ko, Mayor of Taipei, expressed his deep concern over the severe impact the pandemic has had on Castries.
“I was delighted to make the donations to help protect frontline medical personnel from the virus and provide children with stationeries while they study. Taipei City is willing to share its experiences and practices to combat the pandemic, and believes that, through cooperation, we will defeat the virus,” the Mayor of Taipei wrote in his letter to Francis.
In a recorded Video, Former Ambassador of Taiwan to Saint Lucia, Tom Chou, who is now Commissioner of the Taipei Mayor’s Office for External Affairs, also offered his greetings to his friends in Saint Lucia. He said he missed Saint Lucia to which he had devoted most of his energy in his diplomatic career. He was proud that Taipei City has kept its economy growing while successfully managing the pandemic, and shared its experiences and practices with all sister cities since April 21 of this year.
Mayor Francis graciously thanked the City of Taipei along with its Mayor Dr. Wen-je Ko.
“It gives me great pleasure to accept this timely gift on behalf of the people of Castries. Taiwan has not only been a friend and partner in good times, but also in bad times. Good use of the donation will be made. The people of Taiwan have responded positively and this showcases their commitment”, Mayor Francis said.
Taipei City and the City of Castries established a sister-city relationship on August 22, 2018.
With its population of about 2.6 million, Taipei City is the capital of Taiwan and one of the major hubs in East Asia.
So far, Taiwan has provided St. Lucia with medical devices and personal protective equipment for COVID-19 including 454,000 surgical face masks, 10,000 N95 masks, 20,000 doses of hydroxychloroquine, 4,000 isolation suits, 2,000 protective suits, 450 portable handheld thermometers, 6 body temperature imagers, 3 forehead thermometers, 4 ventilators, 2 PCR machines with 720 test kits, and 3,500 rapid test kits.