• Directory of Taiwan

China Times: ROC an asset in cross-strait development

Sixty-five years after Taiwan and China were split at the end of the Chinese civil war, the notion of the Republic of China, Taiwan's official name, has been brought up twice so far this year in China amid warming ties between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait. It was first mentioned by Mainland Affairs Council Minister Wang Yu-chi, Taiwan's top China policy planner, during a visit last month to the Sun Yat-sen mausoleum in Nanjing, where he paid his respects to the man hailed as the founding father of modern China. During a talk at the mausoleum's plaza, Wang noted that Sun is credited with building the first democratic republic in Asia after overthrowing the Qing Dynasty in 1911, and that "the ROC has been in existence for 103 years." About a week later, Lien Chan, an honorary chairman of Taiwan's ruling Kuomintang, urged the leader of the Communist Party of China in a meeting that the reality of the existence of the ROC should be faced by all. The ROC is an asset rather than a liability in cross-strait ties, Lien was quoted as saying during a talk with Chinese President Xi Jinping. These developments are seen as a breakthrough in cross-strait relations, as they indicate Beijing's tacit approval of the existence of the ROC. To reach this understanding, the two sides have demonstrated a high level of wisdom because the identification of the ROC reflects the true dilemma in cross-strait exchanges -- which is the sense of political belonging for both sides. Taiwanese people have always been haunted by the uncertainty of national identification, which is why little progress has been made in forging political consensus. This is why Lien's emphasis of the existence of the ROC came at the right time because it urges Beijing to face up to the historical fact and political reality of the existence of two separate governments within "one China," a political framework Beijing advocates for handling cross-strait relations. The respect for the ROC's existence is not aimed at tearing China apart, but to enrich its context, so that the concept of a "new China" can be shared by people across the strait, thus helping the two sides to reach out further toward each other. (Editorial abstract, March 1, 2014)

Updated : 2021-10-18 08:29 GMT+08:00