Sat, Nov 03, 2012 - Page 13 News List

JCCI urges speedier trade negotiations with Beijing, Tokyo

By Helen Ku  /  Staff reporter

The Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI) in Taipei yesterday urged the government to speed up further trade talks with Beijing and Tokyo to bring down tariffs on more goods exported to those countries.

Taiwan-based Japanese firms hold high expectations that the number of customs-deductible goods and services listed in the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA), which Taiwan signed with China, would increase if talks were extended, JCCI senior director Kyota Kishimoto said during a press conference to unveil the business group’s annual white paper.

“The ECFA has helped to boost cross-strait trade opportunities and build a mutually beneficial relationship between companies in China and Taiwan. It also benefits Taiwan-based Japanese firms exporting goods and services to China at lower customs rate,” Kishimoto said.

A Taiwan-Japan free-trade agreement (FTA) would add more than 500 items to the list of tariff deductible goods, based on the newly released white paper.

“We look forward to further trade agreements between Taiwan and China on goods and services that are not listed in the ECFA. They would attract more Japanese businesses to invest in Taiwan, strengthening economic ties between the two countries,” Kishimoto said.

If Taiwan inks more FTAs with other regional economies, it would enhance the country’s attractiveness, he added.

“We hold a positive attitude toward the Taiwanese government’s determination that Taiwan will join the US-led Trans-Pacific Partnership [TPP] in eight years and believe the TPP agreement will help foster economic ties between Taiwan and other regional economies,” Kishimoto said.

“Though Taiwan and Japan signed an investment protection accord in September, we encourage the Taiwanese government to initiate more dialogue with the Japanese government on a Taiwan-Japan FTA to avoid trade barriers and protect investment activities in the two economies,” he said.

Council for Economic Planning and Development Deputy Minister Wu Ming-chi (吳明機) said yesterday the Taiwanese and Japanese governments would continue to look for ways to ink a bilateral free-trade pact.

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