Mr. Speaker, yesterday, as the chair of the Society of Canadians for Asia-Pacific Freedom and Democracy, I wrote to President Chen Shui-bian of Taiwan to congratulate him on his re-election. I have met with the president on two occasions and it gives me great pleasure to know that the democratic reforms that he champions will continue.
Thirteen million Taiwanese voted in the presidential election and the margin of victory was only 29,000 votes.
In another hard fought election four years ago, President Chen, of the DPP, or Democratic People's Party, became the first democratically elected president to bring a peaceful transition from the KMT, who had ruled Taiwan since 1949. Democracy has been embraced by the people and it is making great progress.
Canadians are proud to have Taiwan as our Asia-Pacific friend and neighbour.