中南美洲外交出擊

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1989 / 2月

文‧谷璘秀 圖‧李培徽


在短短的一年半之內,行政院長俞國華展開一連串的外交出擊。他四度出國敦睦友邦,先後赴新加坡、韓國、巴拉圭訪問,今年元月他遠赴巴哈馬則負有更大任務——與巴國建立正式外交關係。之後,他轉赴多明尼加、瓜地馬拉等地訪問。


中南美洲,被認為是我國欲突破外交現況最具發展空間的大舞台。

原因其實不難理解,一方面是中南美許多國家共同面臨財政問題,而目前我國有足夠力量可提供支援;二方面是拉丁美洲人民個性活潑、友善,願與全球所有國家和人民建立關係。他們重感情,較不受傳統國際法理論所限,只要「認真」、用心與其交朋友,彼此可保持良好情誼,因此是我國施行「彈性外交」的重要地區。

包括新締交的巴哈馬在內,我國在中南美洲共有十三個友邦;在無邦交國家中,我國多與其維持實質關係,現今在七國中設有九個商務辦事處。

逆水行舟

外交部中南美司司長國剛認為我國在外交上採取「逆水行舟」的策略,「光是防守不夠,必須以攻為守。」

雖然有人批評與我國打交道的以小國居多,「但是基於國際法,大國、小國在國際社會上地位都是平等的」,國司長說:「在我國積極重返國際組織的關頭,無論大小國都代表一票,而每一票我們都不能輕忽。」

對已有邦交的國家,外交人員施出渾身解數加強與我的既有關係,希望對方也能幫著影響其他國家,相繼與我們交朋友。對無邦交國則盡力於提升實質關係的層次。對與我國、中共皆無關係者,則極力爭取外交關係,巴哈馬就是一個例子。

一月七日,特使團飛越太平洋、加勒比海,跨過國際換日線,千里迢迢從台灣經美國到巴哈馬,為的就是「交朋友」。

這個特使團陣容堅強,包括了中華民國行政院院長俞國華伉儷、交通部長郭南宏、外交部次長金樹基伉儷、新聞局長邵玉銘、農委會副主委葛錦昭及行政院第二組組長張炳南、外交部禮賓司長黃秀日、中南美司司長國剛等。

對長期處於外交逆流的我國而言,中、巴建交可真是個好彩頭。為了這樁喜事,新聞界也派出猛將隨團採訪。

政治觀察家指出,自民國六十五年退出聯合國後,新締交的九個國家中,巴哈馬可說是實力最佳者。

一四九二年,哥倫布發現新大陸時,就是在巴哈馬的島嶼登陸。一七八三年,它成為英國殖民地,一九六四年人民開始擁有自治權,一九七三年正式獨立。

這個面積一萬三千九百多平方公里、人口廿四萬、國民所得約八千美元的群島國家,以觀光和金融業聞名於世。但對我國民眾而言,它卻不是很熟悉的地方。

到底兩國是如何結緣的呢?

早在民國七十年代初期,我國財金當局籌設境外金融中心時,巴哈馬首都那索即是我國中意的地點之一。

崇尚民主的新朋友

其間我國不斷透過駐外單位與巴哈馬接觸,直到去年三月,巴國總理賓德林透過公關公司安排,率領四十餘人自費來訪。訪問之後,鑑於我國在經濟上的快速發展,有意在台成立商務代表處。

賓德林總理表示,返國後他經過深思,覺得「台灣經驗」難能可貴,尤其在農、工業的發展,十分值得學習,遂決心締結兩國更深入的交情。

去年十一月十七日,巴哈馬副總理兼外交暨觀光部長梅納赴華,參加「太平洋邊緣國家成功經濟策略研討會」,並與我國外交部長連戰簽署了聯合公報,協議儘快建立外交關係。

今年一月九日下午一時,中巴外交部同時公開宣布兩國正式建交。約莫一小時之後,俞院長一行人飛抵巴國,接受這位「知交」的隆重歡迎。

在當晚的慶祝建交酒會中,梅納副總理舉杯,代表巴哈馬七百個島嶼給予我國一千個歡迎和祝福。

俞院長致答辭時指出,巴哈馬擁有天然美景和友善的人民,雖然和我國在發展上有許多不同之處,但卻同是崇尚自由、民主的國家。他希望兩國建交,不但能為長遠的友誼開新頁,並能促使世界正義與和平的具體實現。

不再是「過客」

一月十日早上十時,俞院長與賓德林總理簽定「中巴友好合作聯合聲明」。雙方同意促進兩國經貿(包括商務、觀光、農業方面),及文化、科技、教育、藝術等各方面的合作與交流。

簽署後互換禮物,我國贈巴國屏風一座及麒麟蓋瓶,賓德林則回贈一幅當地名畫家的作品,畫面有碧海、藍天和漁船。「天空和海洋是巴哈馬的顏色,我把它送給你們」,賓德林指著畫中的小漁船說:「我要搭此船到貴國去!」俞院長笑答:「這恐怕得花一年的時間呢!」

而真正的「交通」已然開始。

巴哈馬總理獲邀即將訪華,並派遣「工作小組」赴華考察農、工業。我國也將派員至巴國學習觀光、金融等技術作法;另方面派技術團協助其農漁業技術的改進,並使用其港口停靠遠洋漁船。大使館也預計在兩個月內設立。

次日,巴國安排我國代表團參觀大巴哈馬島上兩家規模頗大的製藥廠。俞院長對其防治污染的作法十分注意,希望也能為我國經濟與環保面臨的衝突求得「良策」。

隔壁的青草綠

在觀光方面,陽光、碧海和沙灘是巴國的籌碼,與我國發展的重點不同,但他們在硬體與軟體的設備與作法,卻值得學習。例如,減低海洋的污染及禁漁禁獵的嚴格執行等。而巴國總理的暗示:「我們沒有在海水放『顏料』!」也令人既莞爾又生戒惕之心。

短短幾天行程中,我國官員還利用時間作專業訪問,如交通部長郭南宏與巴國交通部長、工程暨公用事業部長交換「整頓」心得;農委會副主任葛錦昭與巴國農業、貿易暨工業部長對日後的合作再作深入的討論。

而巴國民眾,對俞院長夫人董梅真女士捐贈慈善機構二萬美金的親善表現,也印象深刻。由於傳播媒體的報導,當地居民對中華民國已有更深一層的認識。

離開巴國前,俞院長在答宴中表示,我國於一九五○年代中期,外匯存底只有二億美元,如今已超過七百億美元,高居世界第二。這股經濟力量要求我們在國際上扮演一個肩負更多責任的角色,「這點,我們已有了萬全的準備去承擔。」但俞院長也強調,西諺說:「隔壁的草比較綠」,巴國的「綠草」仍值得我國學習與效法。

對兩國國民而言,都希望彼此的「綠草」蒼翠、友誼常青。

台灣經驗要得

一月十二日,特使團至多明尼加訪問。多國副總統莫拉瑞斯夫婦以晚宴歡迎並贈勳給俞院長。

次日,在俞院長的答宴中,年屆八十、視力不良的多國總統巴拉格破例參加酒會,原預定停留十分鐘,後來因為與俞院長談起「台灣經驗」,對我國經濟發展歷程深感興趣,談了將近四十分鐘才離去。這在多國是極罕見的情形。

在多國停留期間,特使團還拜會參眾議長及外交部長等;俞夫人則至多國國家發展暨和平基金會訪問,並參觀孤兒院。

一月十四日,俞院長一行抵瓜地馬拉。風塵僕僕的特使團一下飛機,瓜國總統席瑞索即以午宴招待,我國隨行記者亦在受邀之列。俞院長贈勳給席瑞索,並面邀他來我國訪問,席瑞索總統欣然答應。

此外,為表重視我國此次來訪,瓜國總統與副總統分別親自主持兩場記者會,答覆我國新聞界的問題。除了外交事宜,中瓜經貿關係亦是主要的話題。副總統賈必歐對俞院長率團來訪十分高興,他表示,國與國之間的關係亦需靠雙方的互訪來加強。

而俞院長送瓜國的「見面禮」,是答應提供五百萬美元貸款協助瓜國發展小型企業。這筆貸款將能為瓜國創造八千個工作機會。

在中南美洲,以中小企業發展為主線的「台灣經驗」發揮獨特的魅力,使得特使團受到隆重而熱烈的歡迎;而俞院長多年的「銀行家」形象,也獲得當地政要相當的尊敬。

這一趟出門,只有短短十三天,但實質收穫卻頗豐。從去年八月赴巴拉圭參加巴國總統史托斯納爾的就職典禮,到今年赴巴哈馬建交,至多、瓜二國訪問,我與中南美洲的「距離」已明顯地縮短。

對我國的外交尖兵而言,這還只是個開始而已。

〔圖片說明〕

P.26

中巴兩國簽定「中巴友好合作聯合聲明」分別由我國行政院長俞國華與巴國總理賓德林代表簽署。

P.27

這幅畫中有藍天、碧海和漁船,是巴國贈我國的建交禮物。

P.27

俞院長利用閒暇和隨行的記者們聊天。

P.28

一月十日是俞院長七十五歲的新曆生日,他自己都忘了這件事,沒想到巴國總理卻為他準備生日蛋糕慶祝。

P.28

在俞院長答宴巴國總理賓德林的會場中,兩國為雙方的友誼舉杯同賀。

P.29

多明尼加以隆重的軍禮歡迎俞院長的來訪。

P.29

俞院長贈勳給多國總統巴拉格,圖左為我駐多國大使王孟顯。

相關文章

近期文章

EN

Latin American Diplomacy on the Offensive

Ku Ling-hsiu /photos courtesy of Li Pei-hui /tr. by Phil Newell

Within the past year and a half, Premier Yu Kuo-hwa has four times gone abroad: to Singapore, the Republic of Korea, and Paraguay for visits, and most recently to the Bahamas for an even more important duty--the establishment of formal diplomatic relations. Afterward, the Premier also stopped over in the Dominican Republic and Guatemala.


Latin America is considered a likely stage for the ROC to make diplomatic breakthroughs, because the ROC has the resources to assist nations there, and because the Latin Americans are open, friendly, and emotional people who think more of "heartfelt effort" than traditional niceties of international law. With the recently added Bahamas, the ROC now has official relations with 13 Latin American nations, and 9 trade offices set up in seven others.

Kuo Kang, director of the Department of Central and South America at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, says "the best defense is a good offense." Though some criticize the small size of many ROC diplomatic partners, Director Kuo notes that all countries get one vote in international organizations; no one can be ignored. Also, it is hoped these countries can influence others to strengthen substantive or even to establish official relations with the ROC

On January 7, a special team flew thousands of miles over the Pacific and the Caribbean to the Bahamas to "make friends."

The lineup for this team was especially strong, including Premier Yu Kuo-hwa and Mrs. Yu; Minister of Communications Kuo Nan-hung; Vice Foreign Minister Charles Shu-chi King and Mrs. King; Government Information Office Director-General Shaw Yu-ming; Vice Chairman of the Council on Agriculture Chin Chao Koh; Chang Ping-nan, director of the Second Department(overseas and minorities affairs) of the Executive Yuan; Hoang Siou-je, director of the Protocol Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs; and Kuo Kang, director of the ministry's Department of Central and South American Affairs.

For the ROC, long in a diplomatic slump, the establishment of relations is an important step. The news media dispatched a crowd of reporters to cover the event.

Political observers note that of the nine countries with whom the ROC has established relations since its withdrawal from the United Nations, the Bahamas is the most important.

Columbus landed here in 1492, discovering the New World. It became a British colony in 1783, gained self-governing status in 1964, and independence in 1973. This 13,900 square kilometer island group, population 24,000, is famous for tourism and finance, though not familiar to Chinese.

How did this connection come off?

In fact, the ROC sent out feelers in the early 80's when the Bahamian capital Nassau was one object of a search for an offshore financial center, but there was no response. Then, last March, Bahamian Prime Minister Lynden Pindling led a group of over forty on a personal visit to the ROC Because of Taiwan's rapid economic development, they planned to open a trade center here.

The Right Honorable Sir Pindling relates that after returning home, and deeper reflection, he concluded that the Taiwan experience is very valuable, especially in agricultural and industrial development, and resolved to deepen the relationship.

Last November 17, Vice Premier Clement T. Maynard, concurrently minister for both Foreign Affairs and Tourism, came to the ROC to attend a conference on the successful economic development strategies of nations in the Pacific rim. He signed a joint communique with Foreign Minister Lien Chan calling for establishment of formal relations at the earliest date.

On January 1, the two nations' foreign ministries issued announcements of the establishment of relations. One hour after, Premier Yu left for the Bahamas where he received a welcome appropriate to the new level of relations.

Premier Yu pointed out that the Bahamas is blessed with limitless natural beauty and friendly people. While there are differences in the two nations' development, both are freedom-loving democracies. He hoped that the establishment of relations would be a boon not only to friendly relations between the two countries, but also for the practical realization of justice and peace in the world.

On January 10, Premiers Yu and Pindling signed the "Joint Communique on Sino-Bahamian Friendship and Cooperation." The two sides agreed to promote relations in trade and economics (including commerce, tourism, and agriculture), culture, technology, education, sports, and the arts. After signing the two sides exchanged gifts representative of their nations.

In fact, real "exchange" has already begun.

Prime Minister Pindling has accepted an invitation to come to the ROC, and a work team has been sent to look at local agriculture and industry. The ROC will send teams to study the development of tourism and promote financial cooperation, as well as a technical team to help improve technology in the agriculture and fishing industries. Longdistance ROC fishing vessels will stop over in the Bahamas. Embassies should be open within two months.

In visiting two large factories, Premier Yu was especially interested in environmental protection technology. Both "hardware" and "software" aspects of the Bahamas' tourism industry are worthy of study. Minister Kuo and Vice Chairman Koh engaged in discussions with their Bahamian counterparts on areas of current concern and future cooperation.

The Bahamian people were deeply impressed by a US$20,000 contribution made by Premier and Mrs. Yu to a charitable institution. With wide media coverage, they now have a deeper understanding of the ROC

At the dinner hosted by Premier Yu, the premier noted that the ROC's huge foreign exchange reserves demand that it shoulder more responsibility in the world. "And we are prepared to shoulder that responsibility." But he also emphasized that "the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence," and the ROC could learn much from the Bahamas' "green grass."

Here's to keeping relations between the two sides growing along with it.

On January 12, the special team arrived in the Dominican Republic, where they were given a dinner by Vice President Carlos Morales Troncoso. At Premier Yu's return dinner, the ailing 80-year-old President, Dr. Joaquin Balaguer, was scheduled to come for ten minutes; fascinated in discussing the Taiwan experience with Premier Yu, he stayed for forty, a very special consideration. Mrs. Yu visited an orphanage during the stop.

On the 14th the party arrived in Guatemala, where they were hosted at a lunch by President Vinicio Cerezo Arevalo. The President and Vice-President also held press conferences; diplomatic and economic and trade relations between Guatemala and the ROC were central topics. Premier Yu brought a gift of a US$5 million loan for developing small enterprises. In Latin America, the Taiwan experience holds great attraction, and Premier Yu's long-term status of "banker" won considerable respect among leading politicians there.

This trip, on top of last year's visit to Paraguay, has clearly narrowed the distance between Latin America and the ROC And this is only the beginning.

[Picture Caption]

The Joint Communique on Sino-Bahamian Friendship and Cooperation was jointly signed by Premier Yu Kuo-hwa of the ROC and Prime Minister Lynden Pindling of the Bahamas.

The picture of a sailboat, fair skies, and blue ocean was given to the R .O.C. by the Bahamas on the occasion of the two countries' establishing relations.

Premier Yu used some spare time to chat with reporters.

The Bahamian government surprised Premier Yu with a birthday cake to mark his 75th birthday, which was January 10th.

At the dinner given by Premier Yu in Sir Pindling's honor, the two sides drank a toast to mutual friendship.

Premier Yu was accorded a red carpet reception on his arrival in Dominic a.

Premier Yu conferred an honorary sash on the president of Do Minica, Dr. President Joaquin Balaguer.

 

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