Taipei--Taiwan will officially close its embassy in Panama on Wednesday as the former ally does the same in Taiwan, Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokeswoman Eleanor Wang (???) said Tuesday.
The embassies will shut down, diplomatic staff will leave, and implementation of all bilateral cooperation programs and agreements between the two countries will be terminated, Wang said at a press conference held by the ministry.
Wang noted, however, that the ROC-Panama free trade agreement (FTA) will remain in force until the two sides reach a new consensus on bilateral trade relations or strike a new trade deal.
Although Panama has repeatedly expressed the hope that the two sides open commercial offices in each other's territory, Taiwan's economic and trade authorities are still studying the proposal, Wang said.
Also, questions like whether or not the proposed offices would have consular functions, such as issuing travel documents, are still to be resolved through bilateral talks, she added.
Panama switched its diplomatic recognition from Taiwan to China on June 13 (Taiwan time).
After Panamanian President Juan Carlos Varela's announced the new links, Taiwan's Foreign Affairs Minister David Lee (???) informed the press that the Republic of China (Taiwan) was terminating its diplomatic relations with the Central American nation.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel