Tue, Jul 03, 2012 - Page 13 News List

Taiwan mulling mutual recognition pact with US

Staff writer, with CNA, Washington

Taiwan will discuss signing a mutual-recognition agreement (MRA) with the US to boost exports after talks about a major trade pact resume, trade officials said on Sunday.

The removal of technical trade hurdles and the subsequent signing of an MRA will be top priorities when talks under the Trade Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) resume, the officials said.

An MRA with the US would mean that major exports, such as electronics and machinery products, would undergo tests and verification in Taiwan and obtain recognition from the US, the officials said.

Since such products would no longer have to be tested and verified in the US, they would be more competitive because the time it takes them to hit the US market would be significantly cut, the officials added.

TIFA talks have been stalled since 2007 due to an ongoing dispute over US beef imports containing traces of the livestock feed additive ractopamine.

The TIFA was initiated in 1994 as a platform for Taiwan-US dialogue on trade-related issues in the absence of diplomatic ties.

The Office of the US Trade Representative has maintained a low profile on the beef issue, and has not commented on when the Legislative Yuan may pass a bill to allow US beef containing ractopamine residue to enter Taiwan.

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