Jakarta--President Tsai Ing-wen (???) has expressed her government's appreciation for Indonesian workers in Taiwan for their contributions to the country's economic development, in an interview with several media outlets in Southeast Asia and South Asia.
Indonesia is currently the largest source of foreign migrant workers in Taiwan.
In the interview conducted at the Presidential Office on Friday, Tsai praised young Indonesians working in Taiwan as hard-working, saying that they have played an important role in Taiwan's economic development, according to Indonesian newspaper Kompas.
Citing statistics from Taiwan's Ministry of Labor, the daily said that there were 251,103 Indonesian migrant workers in Taiwan as of March 2017.
Taiwan also maintains good relations with other Southeast Asian countries, including Malaysia, Thailand, the Philippines and Singapore, the paper said.
For example, as many as 16,051 Malaysian students are currently studying in Taiwan, the largest number from a single Southeast Asian country, the paper said.
Coming in second are Indonesian students, with a total of 5,074, it said.
The interview was arranged mainly to discuss Taiwan's "New Southbound Policy."
Besides Kompas, representatives from five other media outlets also took part -- The Hindu of India, The Sun of Malaysia, The Philippine Daily Inquirer, The Straits Times of Singapore and The Nation of Thailand.
Tsai told the foreign journalists that the goal of the "New Southbound Policy" is to develop extensive cooperation with Southeast Asian and South Asian nations, not limited to trade.
One key project is creating a Muslim-friendly environment in Taiwan, she said, noting that the Taiwan External Trade Development Council set up a Taiwan Halal Center on April 21 to help Taiwanese companies access Muslim markets in Southeast Asia.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel