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Taiwan VP Arrives in Malaysia

March 4, 1998

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) _ In a visit kept low-key for fear of angering China, Taiwan’s vice president arrived in Malaysia on Wednesday on a mission to strengthen trade and investment ties.

Malaysia maintains diplomatic ties with China, which considers Taiwan a breakaway province with no right to conduct its own foreign affairs. China insists that its diplomatic partners shun formal relations with Taiwan.

Malaysian authorities largely appeared reluctant to comment on Vice President Lien Chan’s visit.

Chan, accompanied by a 19-member delegation of government and business leaders, was scheduled to meet with Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad and Deputy Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim, said Kiang Chuan Ching of the Taiwan Economic and Trade Cultural Center.

Anwar confirmed the meeting, telling Taiwan Television there were going to be private talks on trade, business and investment.

An official at Malaysia’s Foreign Ministry told The Associated Press he had no details.

``Whenever it comes to Taiwan, there is an element of, well, it’s kept quiet, because of the Chinese government, you know,″ the representative said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

Taiwan established a government independent of the mainland at the end of the Chinese civil war in 1949.

Update hourly