Oct 04, 2010

Taiwan, Nicaragua ink satellite imaging pact

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Taiwan and Nicaragua recently signed a satellite information cooperative agreement under which Taiwan will provide aerial view photographs to its Central American diplomatic ally to help with disaster prevention and land utilization efforts there.

Taiwan’s Earth observation satellite FORMOSAT-2, operated by the National Space Organization, will take photographs of Nicaragua’s ecological conservation zones, agricultural lands and urban areas to help boost the country’s real-time monitoring capabilities.

Alejandro Rodriguez, director of the Nicaraguan Institute of Territorial Studies, said at the signing ceremony that Nicaragua and Taiwan share a similar natural environment and that both have been struck by devastating storms and flooding recently.

He expressed his appreciation for Taiwan’s sharing of its satellite technical know-how, saying this would significantly increase Nicaragua’s ability to respond to natural challenges.

Republic of China Ambassador to Nicaragua Wu Chin-mu said since April 2009, Taiwan has been providing satellite images regularly to Nicaragua and helping train local high-tech personnel in the field.

According to Wu, Taiwan has assisted in monitoring recent natural disasters in Nicaragua, including major forest fires that broke out around Masaya Volcano last year and landslides on Ometepe Island in Lake Nicaragua.

The agreement is expected to build on existing cooperation and extend support to Taiwan’s allies in tackling climate change, officials said.

Nicaragua’s Deputy Minister for External Cooperation Valdrack Jaentschke also attended the ceremony. (SB)

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