Taiwan's top China policy official reaffirmed Wednesday the government's commitment to helping China-based Taiwanese businessmen tackle difficult situations facing them amid the adjustment period of China's economy after high-speed growth.
Taiwan and China have a shared responsibility for regional peace and development, and maintaining peaceful development in the region is in line with the common interests of both sides, Mainland Affairs Minister Chang Hsiao-yueh (???) said at a forum held in Taichung by the Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF) for China-based Taiwanese businessmen.
Chang said she hopes dialogue between Taiwan and China can be resumed at an "appropriate time" after Beijing suspended its communication mechanism with Taiwan when Taiwan's new government assumed office May 20.
Beijing insists that President Tsai Ing-wen (???) accept the "1992 consensus" as the political foundation for cross-Taiwan Strait dialogue, but Tsai and her Democratic Progressive Party do not recognize its existence.
The consensus as perceived by the previous Kuomintang administration is a tacit agreement with China that there is only one China, with each side of the strait free to interpret what that means.
Meanwhile, SEF Chairman Tien Hung-mao (???) said that the "1992 consensus" is an old issue that should be addressed through discussion with China's high-ranking policymakers.
Tien also said that the SEF will work out measures to resume normal interactions with its mainland counterpart, the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits (ARATS).
The SEF is the semi-official organization in charge of negotiating with China and dealing with cross-strait affairs in the absence of official ties.
At the forum, Hsu Cheng-wen (???), vice chairman of a Taiwanese business association in Harbin, complained that Taiwanese businessmen have come under heavy pressure because of the government's refusal to recognize the "1992 consensus."
Maintaining cooperation and exchanges with China, the world's second-largest economy, will be certainly beneficial to Taiwan, said Wang Ping-shen (???), chairman of the Association of Taiwan Investment Enterprises on the Mainland.
Taiwan should resume exchanges with China soon, Wang said, adding that only through the resumption of normal relations with China will the "status quo" in cross-strait ties be maintained.
Also Wednesday, Ma Xiaoguang (???), spokesman of the Taiwan Affairs Office under China's State Council, attributed the dwindling number of Chinese tourists coming to Taiwan over the past few months to the fallout from the Taiwan government's refusal to recognize the 1992 consensus.
Ma also noted that China has recently passed draft amendments to the Law on the Protection of Investment of Taiwan Compatriots, to create a more fair environment for Taiwanese investment in China.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel