People from Taiwan have increased their spending in Lithuania’s online stores amid growing ties between the two countries.
According to the data from Taiwan’s institutions, residents of the island’s seven large cities made approximately 112,000 credit card payments, worth more than 2.5 billion new Taiwan dollars (around €76 million), in Lithuanian stores between February and the end of June.
“Lithuania has become one of the top ten destinations for online credit card spending by Taiwanese consumers,” Bi-khim Hsiao, Taiwan’s economic and cultural representative to the United States, said in a Twitter post sharing a picture of a bottle of Lithuanian beer she bought.
The biggest spenders were the residents of Taipei who splashed approximately 1 billion new Taiwan dollars in Lithuania, according to local news website United Daily News (UDN).
Diplomatic relations between Lithuania and Taiwan have grown substantially stronger this year, especially after Vilnius agreed to host Taipei’s representation under the name of "Taiwan".
This has drawn backlash from China, which recalled its ambassador from Vilnius and ordered Lithuania to call back its envoy from Beijing.
China tries to keep Taipei isolated on the world stage and avoids any official use of the word "Taiwan" so as not to give international legitimacy to the self-ruled island of 23 million people.