As tensions rise between Lithuania and China over the Baltic state’s decision to open a Taiwan Representative Office, a shipment of rum seems to be another step in furthering ties between Taipei and Vilnius.
20,400 bottles of Lithuanian rum were denied entry to China. Taiwan immediately stepped up to purchase the alcohol. The bottles, originally printed in simplified Mandarin, used in China, are now being reprinted with traditional Mandarin characters, used in Taiwan.
The rum should begin to be sold over the Lunar New Year holiday according to reports. This is just a minor part in the ongoing saga of Taiwan’s support of Lithuanian businesses amid Chinese backlash to the Taiwan Representative Office opened in the Vilnius.
As trade between Lithuania and China has fallen to nearly 0, though before they weren’t primary trading partners either it must be remembered, Taiwan has stepped in to fill the gap by buying up numerous Lithuania goods, including the aforementioned rum. Taiwan has also set up a US$1 billion dollar fund for joint projects between the two countries.
The future is still unknown in terms of Taiwan-Lithuania diplomatic relations, however it seems as though Taiwan is deeply committed to making this a prosperous relationship increased belligerency from Beijing may have the opposite of the intended effect, leading Lithuania to ossify its position supporting Taiwan.
The only thing to do now is grab a bottle of Lithuanian rum and watch what happens.