Amid China's economic downturn, Taiwan's MAC warns of risks to cross-strait relations

Mainland Affairs Council advisory committee anticipates increased challenges for cross-strait ties in months ahead

(Taiwan Today photo)

(Taiwan Today photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan’s Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) on Thursday (Oct. 31) released the summary of an advisory committee meeting that suggests China is increasing pressure on Taiwan because of significant political and economic risks — both internal and external.

The report suggests that, as China faces slower economic growth, Beijing is likely to intensify its campaign to isolate Taiwan internationally and also begin making it more difficult for Chinese investors to pursue business opportunities in Taiwan. The cumulative result is likely to be increasing instability in cross-strait relations, reports CNA.

The summary report was released following the 15th session of the MAC’s advisory committee, which was entitled “Political and economic risks for Taiwan resulting from China's economic downturn.” The report pointed out several aspects of China’s proposed structural economic reforms, which so far have failed to produce any significant impact on reversing the economic slowdown.

The direction of China’s economy, coupled with the impact and potential risks of the U.S.-China trade conflict, have made the Chinese economy and job market unstable. This state of affairs may prompt China to view Taiwan as a possible dumping ground for exports while it also limits Taiwanese imports, leading to a potential imbalance in cross-strait trade relations.

Scholars and experts warn that Taiwan must be aware of the risks posed by China as it seeks to mitigate the negative impact of its current economic downturn, reports CNA. Given concurrent political risks, with the ongoing unrest in Hong Kong and upcoming Taiwanese presidential elections, the committee thinks it is very likely that China will increase its aggressive overtures towards Taiwan.

The MAC also emphasizes that the situation in China is likely much more severe than the government’s reported data indicates. The summary goes on to state that Taiwan should be aware of financial risks that may arise from poor economic performance and limited capital flow across the strait in the coming months, the report says.