REUTERS/Pichi Chuang - Taiwan Health Minister Yeh Ching-chuan speaks during a news conference in Taipei May 15, 2009 before taking off to attend the 62nd World Health Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland. Taiwan has been invited for the first time to attend the World Health Assembly's annual meeting as an observer.

Opinion | Taiwan-U.S. Quarterly Analysis

Challenges and opportunities for Taiwan’s global health diplomacy

May 2016, Kelley Lee and Jennifer Fang

On May 6, Taiwan received an invitation to attend the 69th World Health Assembly in Geneva as an observer for the seventh time since 2009. The invitation, addressed to “Chinese Taipei”, represents one component of Taiwan’s complicated global health diplomacy, particularly in the context of cross-Strait relations. While Taipei and Beijing agree on the practical need for all populations to be part of global systems of disease surveillance, response and prevention, they disagree on how much this should translate into Taiwan participation in international health cooperation. Kelley Lee and Jennifer Fang discuss the growth of Taiwan’s presence in the international public health sphere, and assess the challenges Taipei still faces. 

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