(Bloomberg) -- Taiwan is deepening economic integration with other democracies and working with partners including the US to deter China’s President Xi Jinping from ordering an invasion of the island, Taipei’s envoy to Washington said.

“China — will they act or not? We don’t know,” Taiwan’s de facto ambassador, Alexander Tah-Ray Yui, said in an interview on Bloomberg Television. “We want to make sure that every day, when Xi Jinping wakes up and looks at the mirror before he shaves, he goes, ‘Not today.’”

Yui said China is preparing for the possibility of aggression against Taiwan but his government is also getting ready with the help of “many friends, including the United States.” China launched fresh military drills after the May 20 inauguration of Taiwan’s new president, Lai Ching-te, with China’s state-run Xinhua News Agency saying they were designed to send a “stern warning against the interference and provocation by external forces” — a reference to the US.

The diplomat said he’s still hopeful about the prospects for legislation that he characterized as “bogged down” in the US Senate to prevent double taxation of Taiwanese firms in the US. He said such a law could usher in even more investment from smaller companies that work with large firms such as Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. 

Yui, who assumed his post in December, also said he’s in touch with US officials about the lag in defense orders caused in part by supply-chain disruptions — which some Republicans have blamed on the Biden administration’s ongoing support for Ukraine.

With US weapons systems, “Many of them we already made the necessary payments and are still awaiting delivery,” Yui said. “That’s an issue we’re constantly talking, coordinating with the US administration.”

Asked whether Beijing was overreacting to the new administration in Taipei, Yui said China was “just trying to find excuses to act up against Taiwan,” including by responding aggressively to political developments in Taipei and visits by US officials such as Nancy Pelosi, who was speaker of the US House of Representatives when she went to Taiwan. But he said it’s not Taiwan or Washington that are fueling regional tensions.

“It’s Beijing who are sending the ships, it’s Beijing who are sending the fighters around Taiwan — it’s them who are creating all the tensions in the Taiwan Strait,” he said. “They have to treat us with respect, as equals.”

Yui said that he hopes that Taiwan and the US can reach a second trade agreement on issues including agriculture, labor and the environment under an initiative that already saw them clinch a deal to reduce some regulatory red tape.

“Negotiating in an election year, the nearer we come to November, the more difficult it will become,” he said of the pending US election. “So we would like to have this as soon as possible.”

--With assistance from Eric Martin, Joe Mathieu and Kailey Leinz.

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