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Investment protection, security is on agenda after ECFA

Negotiations between Taiwan and China will move on to the issues of investment protection and security after the signing of a proposed Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA), a Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) official said yesterday.
Taiwan's policy and negotiation priority has always been "economics first, politics second," which is why it intends to sign the ECFA with China before anything else, said James Chang, deputy director-general of MOFA's Department of Information and Cultural Affairs.
"After the ECFA is signed, both sides will begin an even more difficult and sophisticated part of talks. "
The new phase of negotiation is expected to touch upon various issues such as investment protection and security, which includes the missiles deployed on China's southeastern coast, as well as anti-terrorism measures," he said.
Chang made the remarks while briefing the media after the ministry briefed around 70 foreign representatives in Taiwan on the results of the fourth round of cross-strait talks.
Taiwan and China both intend to focus on economic issues at present as Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait (ARATS) President Chen Yunlin made it very clear in the talks that "political discussions are not an urgent issue right now, " Chang said.
New phase
Once the ECFA is signed, the new phase of negotiations will not be limited to politics.
Taiwan has always called for China to remove its missiles aimed at the country in order to reduce cross-strait tension and convince the people of Taiwan of China's goodwill.
Meanwhile, investment protection is a serious concern of Taiwanese businessmen in China, some of whom have faced legal problems or have suffered operating losses or various forms of fraud in China.
Taiwan has been doing its best since President Ma Ying-jeou took office in 2008 to improve cross-strait relations, Deputy Foreign Minister Shen Lyu-shun told the foreign representatives.
"One side-effect of improved cross-strait relations is the enlargement of Taiwan's international space, " Shen said, citing Taiwan's participation in the World Health Assembly, the Government Procurement Agreement, and high-level representation in the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum as examples.

Updated : 2021-05-12 01:59 GMT+08:00