GEC 2017 switches to ‘Taiwan’ from ‘Chinese-Taipei’ ◎Taiwan News 2017-03-13


Global Entrepreneurship Congress dispenses with the use of Chinese-Taipei as Taiwan’s official name

Karen Yu, DPP lawmaker (second right), Jonathan Ortmans, President of GEN (third right), and David Weng (third left). (Photo courtesy of Karen Yu)

Taipei (Taiwan News)—The four-day Global Entrepreneurship Congress (GEC) that takes place in Johannesburg, South Africa this week, referred to Taiwan’s delegation as speakers from “Taiwan” instead of using the name “Chinese-Taipei.”

Taiwan usually attends large international events, including the Olympics, under the name  “Chinese-Taipei,” due to the “one-China” policy that China reinforces its diplomatic ties to respect.


Karen Yu (余宛如) is introduced as member of Taiwan Congress on GEC 2017 speaker’s webpage. (Image courtesy of GEC 2017)

This is the first time that GEC, organizer Global Entrepreneurship Network (GEN), officially invited delegates from Taiwan’s government to attend the event that takes place from March 13-17, 2017, and chose to address the country’s delegation as “speakers from Taiwan” instead of “Chinese-Taipei.”

Previously, representatives from Taiwan’s private sector attended GEC unofficially under the name “Chinese-Taipei.”Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lawmaker Karen Yu (余宛如), and David Weng (翁嘉盛), Chief Investment Officer in Taiwan’s Asian Silicon Valley initiative, are Taiwan’s official representatives at the annual international entrepreneurship event.

Yu will be mostly sharing Taiwan’s privatization experience, and search for foreign investors, while Weng will be marketing Taiwan’s Asian Silicon Valley plan to the international community.

The Asian Silicon Valley plan is an initiative rolled out in Taoyuan County to promote the Internet of Things (IoT) and innovation to transform the nation’s industry.

Weng was previously employed by U.S. technology giant Cisco Systems, before he became an angel investor in Silicon Valley in California, and has been successful in launching Initial Public Offerings (IPOs) for the companies he invested in.

The Taiwanese delegation intends to promote Taiwan’s comprehensive entrepreneurship environment, laws, and ecosystem to the 2,000 participants from 160 countries at GEC.

The aim is to make connections with the U.S. Silicon Valley, obtain new foreign investments, and partner with international entrepreneurs in technology. Meanwhile, Taiwan hopes to attract international entrepreneurs with its strong manufacturing supply chain.

GEN was founded in 2009 by the Kauffman Foundation, despite being a non-profit organization that the international community recognizes, it receives strong backing from the U.S. government, according to a China Times report which cited sources familiar with the matter.

According to the source, the U.S. government invited Taiwanese speakers to officially attend the event, indicating U.S. President Donald Trump’s active support for partnerships with Taiwan’s government.

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