Your browser does not support JavaScript!

:::

 

 

AIT Director Delivers Memorable Speech on the Taiwan-US Relationship
On April 22 Christopher J. Marut, the Director of American Institute in Taiwan (AIT), delivered a speech at NTHU titled “Three Years at the Helm of AIT: Reflections on the U.S.-Taiwan Relationship.” Director Marut reflected on Taiwan’s role on the international stage and also provided quite a few valuable suggestions for young people getting established in their careers.
 
In his introduction William A. Stanton, Senior Vice President for Global Affairs, pointed out that Marut’s speech has special significance, since it is delivered during the week when NTHU commemorates its founding, in which the US played an important role. In accordance with the Boxer Protocol, China began paying indemnities to the US and other foreign powers in 1901. In 1909 President Roosevelt and the US Congress decided to divert a large portion of these payments to a program for sending Chinese students to American universities. To prepare the students chosen for this program, in 1911 Tsing Hua College (the predecessor of NTHU) was established in Beijing to teach English and to serve as a preparatory school. Thus, right from its inception NTHU has had a close relationship with the US. A large number of NTHU faculty members earned their PhDs in the US, and since 1974 a total of 33 NTHU faculty and students have participated in the prestigious Fulbright Program. In addition, NTHU has established student exchange programs with a number of universities in the US; at present there are 14 American exchange students enrolled at NTHU, and 12 NTHU students currently studying in the US. Notably, this is the first time a serving director of AIT gives a speech at NTHU, and we sincerely hope that this precedent will result in the establishment of a new tradition.
 
In his speech, Director Marut noted that around 60 percent of the world’s population is under 30 years of age, these young people constitute the primary driving force for social and economic progress. He also mentioned that in recent years the US government has redoubled its efforts to connect with the youth worldwide. Commenting on the social changes made evident by last year’s elections in Taiwan, Director Marut stated that in his view young people in Taiwan don’t really fit the stereotype of the “strawberry generation,” but instead exhibit a high degree of motivation, resilience, and confidence. He also encouraged young Taiwanese to not become discouraged by temporary setbacks and to continue moving ahead with a sense of purpose and resolve.
 
Director Marut also pointed out that Taiwan is the US’s tenth largest trading partner, while the US is Taiwan’s second largest trading partner, and that since 2012 trade between the two nations has increased by six percent. He also emphasized that Taiwan and the US have always had a stable relationship in terms of trade, security, and human rights, as made evident by the opening of AIT’s new office in the Neihu district of Taipei.
 
After concluding his speech Marut opened the floor to questions, a number of which concerned the US position on the failure of Taiwan’s recent bid to join the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). Marut replied that the US supports Taiwan’s efforts to participate in various international organizations, and suggested that it is important to anticipate the changes and challenges that such participation might also incur.
 
AIT Director Christopher J. Marut.

AIT Director Christopher J. Marut.

VIP group photo featuring Director Marut (fifth from right), NTHU President Hong Hocheng (center), Director-General Tu Chi-Hsiang of Hsinchu Science Park Bureau, and TSMC Chairman Morris Chang.

VIP group photo featuring Director Marut (fifth from right), NTHU President Hong Hocheng (center), Director-General Tu Chi-Hsiang of Hsinchu Science Park Bureau, and TSMC Chairman Morris Chang.

No. of visitors