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Thread: Taiwan and China agree terms of landmark trade deal

  1. #16
    Senior Contributor Triple C's Avatar
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    A thoughtful and cogent response. For those who aren't Taiwanese and feels confused, the mayoral elections are up. Taichung & Taipei are traditionally die-hard KMT strongholds, Shinbei can swing either way; the rest of the two southern cities are inveterate DPP supporters.

    The amusing monkey wrench in Taichung's election is the murder of a local gangster in his own gambling den, which, in itself, is no big deal. What turned it into a major scandal are 20 cops, who were present during the commission of the crime, had no official business to do in a mobster den and did nothing to stop the relatively protracted killing.

    The uneasiness with ECFA is mostly political. The chances of obtaining MFN status with any other state after EFCA remains, in spite of the Ma administration's claims, null. That's a lot of leverage for the gents from the other side of the strait.
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  2. #17
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    Ehh, come on, even the DPP were on the verge of getting a FTA down with Singapore before they blew it themself, if the Ma government really want FTAs simply for the sake of FTAs, they could easily just agree to sacrifice Taiwan's entire agricultural industry and the USA will probably ink the FTA with Taiwan within weeks. of course that wouldn't happen for obvious reasons .

    Since the KMT seem to decided to put this as a political priority , in showing what they can do that the DPP couldn't, I suspect that in the next year or so they will make some very significant headways with other countries. Singapore is a good place to start obviously, since that bridge was nearly completed before it was burned.

    The DPP can't and won't put up a stance against the free market module, otherwise they can't possibly play out of the fact that they pushed hard for the WTO entry and in the process risked Taiwan's agriculture more than anything ECFA will do. The KMT realizes this , so their political calculation is that as long as they can get some more reasonable FTAs down the DPP will be royally screwed in this aspect.

    And really, Taiwan's voter, espiecally the swing voters that is most crucial, are usually rather practical folks that vote based on economic and employment issues more than anything else, so the both party's incentive on this matter is pretty clearly drawn.

    Bejing does have incentives for Ma's government to succeed too, this couple with the KMT gov's general willingness to compremise and the unlikely prospect of Beijing pushing the crossstrait issue further at the time of their crucial power turnover stage. will probably bode well for the KMT's strategy. though obviously time will tell.

  3. #18
    Senior Contributor Triple C's Avatar
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    I certainly hope you are right. I have reservations about the probability of success in both cases even if there is political will. To put this straight: I will be happy to be proven wrong on the issue.

    However, on the US beef issue, I think the administration only failed because they did not run it through the legislature before they arrived to an agreement with the US. The real impetus behind the failure of beef import is the legislature which felt spurned and opposed it out of spite.
    Last edited by Triple C; 06 Jul 10, at 04:35.
    All those who are merciful with the cruel will come to be cruel to the merciful.
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  4. #19
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    I personally thought it was opportunism on the part of the legislators to get some press for themselves.

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    Well now, there was also that famous case of a PHD student that protested infront of the legislative office by eatting a beef dung hamburger and putting up huge adds in several places around Taipei decrying the policy . strangly he ran (unsucessfully) for the DPP nomination on the Taipei city council.

    Personally, I'm mixed on the issue, Taiwan's beef industry is obviously fragil and uncompetitive in the face of the US' but at the same time it's quality is actually quite good. and I would be sad to see it die out.

    At the moment though, it's a pretty dead case. since both side have raised out the agricultural issue on the FTAs it seems that the KMT will avoid touching FTAs that would have significant effect in that area, while the DPP also must avoid it like a plague otherwise they'll lose their largest base (the farmers of southern Taiwan)

    If the KMT wanted to be mean on the election they could easily just attack again and again on the DPP's inconsistency in the agricultural aspect and drag them around that issue. but I doubt it, the KMT's always been pretty passive on election campaigns, usually just trying to react to whatever the DPP brings up.

  6. #21
    Senior Contributor Triple C's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skywatcher View Post
    I personally thought it was opportunism on the part of the legislators to get some press for themselves.
    Yes and no. PR is a great bonus, but note the KMT legislator expressed their displeasure as well--if your position in the hierarchy affords you certain powers "by the book" but you are bypassed in the decision making process in which you by right should have had a voice, then your authority is undermined. An institution cannot allow that to happen.

    RollingWave,

    On the other hand, I really like an American steak. I am not worried about Mad Cow decease at all--it's a media induced scare. The problem is the circumvention of the normal decision making process in a state that irks me. I would be pretty upset if American pork get to roll in, though--our products in that sector is simply the best.

    I will be pretty damned thrilled to get FTA from the West. It remains to be seen if we'll get lucky or good.
    All those who are merciful with the cruel will come to be cruel to the merciful.
    -Talmud Kohelet Rabbah, 7:16.

  7. #22
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    steak is already importable IIRC , though thanks to the blowout over the mad cow thing that got a ton of press during that last round of talks with the Americans nowadays few places are willing to use it (openly anyway), and instead mostly use New Zeland / Aussies onces instead

    Taiwan's beef industry isn't large enough to really produce steaks anyway. only a small number exist and they are mostly taken by high end chefs before it even reaches the market. though places like Tainan have a strong beef culture. and of course beef noodle is probably the most common food around in Taiwan.

  8. #23
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    ASIA BUSINESS JULY 13, 2010, 12:51 P.M. ET China Boosts Yuan Services for Taiwan

    China Offers Yuan Services to Taiwan Banks - WSJ.com

    Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

    BOC Hong Kong will supply yuan bank notes to Taiwan banks.
    The People's Bank of China said Tuesday that it had authorized BOC Hong Kong (Holdings) Ltd., the Hong Kong unit of state-controlled Bank of China Ltd., to offer yuan cash settlement services to Taiwan banks. BOC Hong Kong already supplies yuan banknotes and related exchange and repatriation services to banks in Hong Kong.

    BOC Hong Kong will be able to supply yuan banknotes to the Hong Kong branches of Taiwan commercial banks. The head offices of those Taiwan banks can then in turn provide yuan cash services to other financial institutions in Taiwan to serve individual local customers.

    "This arrangement will further facilitate cross-strait personnel exchanges, and also lays the foundation for the gradual establishment of a cross-strait currency settlement mechanism and strengthening of monetary cooperation," the People's Bank of China said in a statement on its website.



    Hu Jintao, right, general secretary of the Communist Party of China, met with Wu Poh-hsiung, honorary chairman of Taiwan's Kuomintang, in Beijing on Monday.
    The announcement follows the signing by Taiwan and China last month of the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement, which will reduce tariffs on hundreds of items and open such services as banking to cross-strait investment. On Monday, Chinese President Hu Jintao met with Wu Poh-hsiung, honorary chairman of the Kuomintang, Taiwan's ruling party, and said Beijing hopes the wide-ranging trade agreement can be implemented as soon as possible

    China's central bank said Tuesday that further negotiations would be necessary before Taiwan banks could offer deposits, remittances and trade settlement services in the Chinese currency. Banks in Hong Kong already offer such services to local residents.

    "Hong Kong's established renminbi clearing platform is providing a practical arrangement to facilitate cross-strait cooperation on monetary management," Hong Kong's financial secretary, John Tsang, said in a statement.

    —Liu Li and Andrew Batson
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  9. #24
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    China on track to aim 2,000 missiles at Taiwan: report

    China on track to aim 2,000 missiles at Taiwan: report - Yahoo! News

    TAIPEI (Reuters) – China will have 2,000 missiles aimed at its rival Taiwan by the end of the year, several hundred more than the current number, despite fast-warming trade ties between the two sides, an island defense study said.

    Beijing's preparations setting Taiwan further back in the military power balance against its political adversary could destroy 90 percent of the island's infrastructure, the report published in the defense ministry's naval studies periodical said.

    The increase from today's estimate of 1,000 to 1,400 missiles could raise tensions after two years of upbeat dialogue between the rivals that has cleared the way for direct civilian flights and a free trade-style deal in June.

    "Even though we've signed the trade deal, there won't be any progress on military issues," Hsu Yung-ming, political science professor at Soochow University.

    China claims sovereignty over self-ruled Taiwan and has not renounced the use of force to bring the island into its fold.

    A new threat to detente between tech-reliant Taiwan and economic powerhouse China, already the island's top export destination, would likely chill financial markets as investors hope to see relations gain momentum.

    The 2,000 short-range and mid-range missiles aimed at the island just 160 km (99 miles) away at its nearest point would follow from Beijing's broader plans to modernize its military, said Taiwan Deputy Defence Minister Andrew Yang.

    "In the process of improving air missile capabilities, that could be the number by the end of the year," Yang told Reuters. "We always show our concern, because we see China still has this intention. They are not reducing missiles."

    Taiwan officials have said that China, though keen to unify peacefully with the island by offering economic incentives, must remove missiles aimed at the island before the two sides can discuss a peace accord after six decades of hostilities.

    (Reporting by Ralph Jennings; Editing by Ken Wills)

  10. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Triple C View Post
    The uneasiness with ECFA is mostly political. The chances of obtaining MFN status with any other state after EFCA remains, in spite of the Ma administration's claims, null. That's a lot of leverage for the gents from the other side of the strait.
    Talk of the day--ECFA effect:Taiwan begins FTA talks with Singapore - CNA ENGLISH NEWS

    Talk of the day--ECFA effect:Taiwan begins FTA talks with Singapore

    Slightly more than a month after Taiwan signed a landmark economic cooperation framework agreement (ECFA) with China, Singapore has formally expressed its intention to follow suit in negotiating a similar deal with Taiwan.

    The two countries simultaneously announced their plan early Thursday to begin exploration of the feasibility of signing an economic cooperation agreement similar to a free trade agreement (FTA) under the framework of the World Trade Organization (WTO).

    Diplomatic officials said signing such an accord will benefit both countries because their economies are more complementary to than competitive against each other.

    More importantly, the officials said, Singapore can serve as a stepping stone for Taiwan to strike similar free trade pacts with other major trade partners, including Japan and other Southeast Asian countries.

    A free trade agreement with Singapore will also mark a giant step forward in Taiwan's quest for participation in regional economic integration, the officials added.
    The DPP claims that the trade quantity with Taiwan's six largest trading partner is "insignificant" heh...

    (the only 3 country with significantly more trade quantity than Singapore to Taiwan is China / US / Japan ... Hong Kong as a region also has a lot, and Korea is only slightly ahead of Singapore. so the DPP just claimed that the only signifcant trade partner of Taiwan is China / US / Japan, kudos.)
    Last edited by RollingWave; 05 Aug 10, at 09:21.

  11. #26
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    also, the legistaltive yuan in Taiwan passed the ECFA bill last week.

  12. #27
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    Taiwan, China to launch joint maritime rescue drill

    Taiwan, China to launch joint maritime rescue drill - CNA ENGLISH NEWS

    2010/09/10 20:07:30
    Taipei, Sept. 10 (CNA) Taiwan's Coast Guard Administration (CGA) will conduct a joint maritime rescue drill next week with its Chinese counterpart, the first time the two countries' coastal patrol agencies hold joint marine exercises.

    According to the CGA, it will hold the drill with China's Maritime Search and Rescue Center in waters off southeastern China, between Taiwan's Kinmen Island and the Chinese city of Xiamen.

    Boats and aircraft from Taiwan and China will simulate the collision of two ships on the Kinmen-Xiamen route -- one of the busiest areas in the Taiwan Strait -- and try to save passengers that fall into the sea, the CGA said.

    The CGA will send nine patrol boats, including a 500-ton patrol vessel, and helicopters to Kinmen for the joint drill.

    To avoid unnecessary political disputes, the two sides have decided that all participating vessels and rescue teams will only carry flags that symbolize the joint drill, CGA officials said.

    They underlined that the drill was being held for the sole purpose of preparing for possible accidents in the Taiwan Strait.

    Commenting on the landmark cross-strait marine drill, Legislator Huang Wei-cher of the opposition Democratic Progressive Party said on Friday that he supports the way Taiwan and China have defined marine rescue as "a humanitarian practice."

    "We must recognize China's conduct" to help save Taiwanese fishing boats from difficulties while operating on waters in the Taiwan Strait, he said.

    But Huang also questioned whether Chinese ships should be permitted to sail across the median line of the strait into Taiwan's waters in the future if a marine accident happens on Taiwan's side of the strait.

    "It needs to be discussed," he said.

    On Thursday, former Deputy Minister of National Defense Lin Chong-pin said that although the participants in the rescue drill are not from the military, he sees the event as a "positive signal" in the two sides' pursuit of mutual military trust.

    Lin, now a professor at Tamkang University's Graduate Institute of International Affairs and Strategic Studies, saw the upcoming marine drill as a sign that Taiwan and China have finally begun to pay attention to the long-term need for a joint capability in handling marine accidents in the Taiwan Strait.

    The drill may be the first between the two countries' central government coast guards, but joint exercises have taken place at the local level.

    In October 2008, the Kinmen County government dispatched ships and rescue personnel to conduct a joint marine rescue drill with a similar patrol squad from Xiamen.

    The exercise was formed amid warming cross-strait relations after President Ma Ying-jeou took office in May that year.

    This past June, Kinmen County Magistrate Li Wo-shih urged the two sides to establish a cross-Taiwan Strait marine accident rescue mechanism as soon as possible because of the fast pace at which transport services between Kinmen and Xiamen are growing.

    Lee said 1.28 million traveled between the two destinations by boat in 2009, and the volume is expected to rise this year, Lee said. (By Ho Mung-kuei, Johnson Sun and Elizabeth Hsu) enditem/ls
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  13. #28
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    This is obviously a middle finger to Japan. Here is a hypothetical question, if Taiwan torpedoed a Japanese ship, what would the US do?

    What if a joint fleet of Taiwan and China torpedoed a Japanese ship? Just some random thought

  14. #29
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    the chances of that happening is very low, Taiwan's sub capacity is terrible, and China isn't going to just consider Japan obviously.

  15. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by cdude View Post
    This is obviously a middle finger to Japan. Here is a hypothetical question, if Taiwan torpedoed a Japanese ship, what would the US do?

    What if a joint fleet of Taiwan and China torpedoed a Japanese ship? Just some random thought
    Why would we want to do that? There is zero animus towards Japan or desire for military conflict over here.
    All those who are merciful with the cruel will come to be cruel to the merciful.
    -Talmud Kohelet Rabbah, 7:16.

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