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Lawmakers expect to review ECFA in two additional sessions

Lawmakers expect to review ECFA in two additional sessions

Taipei, June 15 (CNA) "Pan-blue" lawmakers suggested Tuesday that the Legislative Yuan will need two extra sessions to complete its review of a trade pact with China, while their opposition "pan-green" colleagues called for the deal to be screened "item by item." Legislator Lin Hung-chih, secretary-general of the "pan-blue" KMT caucus, said that if the economic cooperation framework agreement (ECFA) being negotiated with China is signed before the end of June, the Legislature would open an additional session between early and mid-July to review it.
After the first round of screening in committees and one month of inter-party negotiations, a second extra legislative session would be held before mid-August, Lin suggested.
Legislator Lee Chun-yee, secretary-general of the opposition "pan-green" Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) caucus, said his caucus will ask the Executive Yuan to deliver its assessment reports on the ECFA's possible impact on Taiwan to the legislature for discussion.
The DPP caucus will "definitely demand negotiations" with the ruling party on the agreement after it is brought to the Legislature, and request that it be examined "article by article" and "item by item," Lee said.
The opposition has strongly opposed the proposed trade deal, touted by the administration of President Ma Ying-jeou as a necessary step to prevent Taiwan from being marginalized in regional and global trade markets.
The DPP fears the pact will undermine the interests of local industrial and agricultural producers by allowing an influx of cheap Chinese goods into Taiwan, and it has repeatedly demanded strict public scrutiny of the pact.
Premier Wu Den-yih said Monday that if cross-strait talks on the ECFA proceed without any glitches, it would likely be signed before the end of June, or in early July at the latest.
Taiwan's legislative body is currently on its summer recess.
Under the country's Constitution, the Legislature can open an additional session at the request of the president or one-fourth of all of its members.
(By Chou Yung-chieh and Elizabeth Hsu)




Updated : 2021-10-26 05:21 GMT+08:00