Four senators are currently in Taiwan on a mission to learn best practices that can be applied to Guam.
Speaker Tina Muna Barnes and Senators Kelly Marsh-Taitano, Clynt Ridgell and Telo Taitague hopped on a plane to Taiwan on Sunday to meet with Taiwanese officials.
“Taiwan is an important economic sector in this region. They have many industries from agriculture, manufacturing, as well as tourism. Our islands share many similarities. How we can learn from their successes and emulate this on Guam is crucial for our island,” Speaker Barnes said.
She added: “We have been meeting with many agencies in Taipei. We met with the energy experts who talked about their priorities including incentivizing energy efficiency in homes, businesses, and the government; increasing their renewable energy portfolios for secure domestic production; as well as their goals in the future. We also met with the agricultural grads who spoke about how they link information technology with farming methods and how they encourage young people to farm as a career. We talked about gender issues and how Taipei is growing with a woman leader. We have more meetings planned, especially meeting indigenous groups of Taiwan and how Taiwan grows, strengthens, preserves, protects, and promotes their ancient cultures and traditions. We are often tasked with finding creative solutions. Taiwan has made tremendous growth over the years and has tackled problems creatively. We look forward to seeing what we can work on to grow Guam.”
One concern was if the senators’ trip was proper since it was paid for by the Taiwanese government.
But Sen. Ridgell said the Legislature’s legal counsel was consulted and they were advised that the trip was “okay.”
Sen. Kelly Marsh-Taitano also said she paid for her own fare.
The senators are scheduled to return to Guam on Friday.