Month: August 2009

Chinese expert on Taiwan contradicts Ma’s ECFA claims

  • By Ko Shu-ling / STAFF REPORTER

The essence of cross-strait economic integration is to advance the undertaking of peaceful unification with China, a Chinese expert on Taiwan affairs said at a cross-strait forum yesterday.

Li Fei (李非), deputy director of the Taiwan Research Center at Xiamen University, said China’s policy of pushing cross-strait economic exchanges has three benefits.

First, it will strengthen China’s economic power and propel economic development in the region. Second, it will stabilize cross-strait relations and spur the two sides’ policy interactions. Finally, it will push forward peaceful unification through economic integration.

Li made the remarks during the first annual forum on the global development of businesses across the Taiwan Strait and the eighth annual cross-strait scientific and economic forum in Taipei City yesterday morning.

Li caused a stir in February when the Washington Post published an interview in which he suggested that Taipei’s plan to sign an economic cooperation framework agreement (ECFA) with Beijing “represents an important step toward the possibility of unification of the longtime adversaries.”

He told the Post that the agreement would be a significant milestone in gradually warming relations between the two sides.

“It’s a start toward full cross-strait economic integration and a necessary condition for marching forward toward final unification,” Li said.

The Presidential Office later dismissed concerns that signing the economic pact would be one more step toward unification, insisting that the government would make the nation’s interests the priority when dealing with China.

While the administration has tried to play down the political implications of an ECFA, Li yesterday said…

Read more at www.taipeitimes.com

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