The Origin of TECRO.

In a letter dated Oct. 13, 1994, Taiwan’s then-representative to the US Benjamin Lu wrote to American Institute in Taiwan chairman Nat Bellocchi: “I take great pleasure in informing you that my government has formally approved that the name of our Washington office will be Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the United States.”

Two months later, on Dec. 20, Bellocchi responded, acknowledging receipt of the letter “informing me of the change in name of your office from the Coordination Council for North American Affairs (CCNAA) to Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the United States (TECRO).”

Earlier, in a letter dated Oct. 3, 1990, then-US Department of State executive secretary J. Stapleton Roy had written to US national security adviser Brent Scowcroft, CIA acting executive secretary James Pittman and US Department of Defense executive secretary Colonel John Dubia, saying: “Consistent with the unofficial nature of US-Taiwan ties, the US Government [USG] no longer refers to Taiwan as the ‘Republic of China’ — a term reflecting Taipei’s continuing claim to be the government of China… We refer to Taiwan simply as Taiwan.”

The U.S. therefore has an “American Institute in Taiwan” and a “Taiwan Relations Act.”

So why is TECRO called the “Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office” today and not the “Taiwan Economic and Cultural Representative Office?”

FAPA understands that in 1994, when Washington asked Taipei for a short list of new names to replace the oddly nondescriptive CCNAA (mis)nomer, Taipei did not submit a possible new name for its representative office with the word “Taiwan” in it — despite Roy stating in 1990 that “we refer to Taiwan simply as Taiwan” in the US guidelines.

The TECRO name is nondescriptive as well of course, as it has the word “Taipei” in it, which creates the impression that the office only represents the capital and its residents.
It would be the equivalent of referring to the American Institute in Taiwan as the Washington Institute in Taiwan.

FAPA believes that the time is now that the US start adhering to reality by changing TECRO to a name that is consistent with US policy: the Taiwan Representative Office. It would set an inspiring precedent for other countries to emulate.

台北駐美經濟文化代表處的起源

一九九四年十月十三日,時任駐美代表魯肇忠向美國在台協會理事主席白樂崎(Nat Bellocchi)致函道:「我很榮幸通知您,我方政府已經正式決議將我駐華府辦公室命名為駐美國台北經濟文化代表處。」

一九九四年十二月二十日,白樂崎回函魯肇忠確認收到「告知駐美辦公室由北美事務協調委員會更名為駐美國台北經濟文化代表處」的訊息。

一九九○年十月三日,在一封寫給美國國家安全顧問史考克羅夫(Brent Scowcroft)、代理中央情報局執行秘書長彼特曼(James R. Pittman),以及國防部執行秘書長杜比亞(John A. Dubia)上校的信函中,美國國務卿芮效儉(Stapleton Roy)寫道:「因美台僅保持非官方關係,美國政府不再稱呼台灣為『中華民國』—一個反映台北持續宣稱其為中國政府的名詞—我方僅稱台灣為台灣。」

我們因此有美國在「台」協會以及「台灣」旅行法。

那為何代表處稱為「台北」經濟文化代表處,而非「台灣」經濟文化代表處?

據FAPA了解,當華府於一九九四年向台北要求一份新的頭銜清單,以取代北美事務協調委員會時,台灣政府並沒有提出任何一個包含「台灣」的選項,即使芮效儉早於一九九○年便提出「我們僅稱台灣為台灣」。

因為有「台北」,台北經濟文化代表處的名字無法彰顯其性質。它製造了一個該代表處僅代表台灣首都台北的印象。依此邏輯,與台北經濟文化代表處相呼應的「美國在台協會」應為「華盛頓在台協會」。

FAPA相信這是美國尊重事實,改變台北駐美代表處名稱為符合美國政策的「台灣代表處」的時候了。這個鼓舞人心的前例,將使其他國家跟進仿效。

(August 28th, 2018) The Origin of TECRO / 台北駐美經濟文化代表處的起源
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