TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Chile will be one of the countries Taiwan will consult about its application to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) trade group after the Latin American nation indicated its support for China’s bid, Minister without Portfolio John Deng (鄧振中) said Wednesday (Oct. 20).
Taiwan filed its application on Sept. 22, but China did so on Sept. 16, causing fears that the communist country will try and block Taipei’s bid if it succeeds in joining first. While most countries gave a positive response to Taiwan’s decision, Chile reportedly was the first one of the CPTPP’s 11 members to give a more enthusiastic welcome to Beijing’s bid.
Deng, who serves as the government’s chief trade negotiator, said Wednesday that Taiwan would hold talks with Chile, Malaysia, and Brunei, even though those three countries did not hold decisive votes related to Taipei’s bid as they had not passed the necessary legislation, the Liberty Times reported. He added that the country would talk to each CPTPP member nation and offer relevant documentation about its bid.
According to the minister, Taiwan had already adjusted its laws and policies to conform to CPTPP regulations, while there had been no sign that China had done so. While the support of eight member countries would be sufficient, Taiwan still needed to be cautious about the possibility of interference by Beijing, Deng said.