Under the joint effort by Slovak Economic and Cultural Office in Taipei and Soochow’s Center for Central and Eastern European Studies, Taiwan-Slovakia Exchange Association was officially established on November 16th, 2020.
With a ribbon-cutting ceremony entitled “The Friendship of Taiwan and Slovakia at Soochow University” in Song-Yi Hall at the school’s Waishuangsi Campus, the non-governmental organization is believed to become an important boost for cooperation and understanding between the two countries.
Distinguished guests in Taiwan and from around the world gathered to offer their congratulations, including Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Harry Ho-Jen Tseng, Representative of the Slovak Economic and Cultural Office Martin Podstavek and several other government officials in charge of international affairs, as well as foreign representatives from Czech Republic, Hungary, Russia, Belize, and Papua New Guinea.
In his remarks, President Wei-Ta Pan pointed out that SCU has had close academic exchanges with Slovak since 1998, not only providing courses related to central and eastern European cultures but also conducting a variety of research and seminars on those areas. Moreover, the school features Taiwan’s only research center devoted to the cultures of these parts of Europe.
Podstavek believed that Taiwan and Slovakia would be linked more closely with the full support of the center and Slovak Economic and Cultural Office in Taipei, as well as the diversified backgrounds of the members of the Association such as entrepreneurs, writers and diplomats, which would push the Slovakia-Taiwan relations to a new level.
An exhibition of Slovakian children’s literature was also in place at Soochow’s Second Academic Building as part of the celebration. Podstavek’s wife Dr. Chen Liang, who grew up in Beijing, noted that eight Slovakia children books have been translated and published in Taiwan since 2019, through which people could gain a deep understanding of its culture.
The ceremony was rounded off with the music performance featuring local music of Taiwan and Slovak given by the students from the Department of Music.
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