Fri, Apr 06, 2012 - Page 8 News List

Ma’s policies bring uncertainty

By Liu Shih-chung 劉世忠

So when Ma tried to test the water by having Wu float the constitutionally defined “one country, two areas,” Beijing took the cautious approach of ignoring such a move. The reason is simple: There is no way Beijing would ever accept “one China” as “the Republic of China.”

Hence, the irony is that, if Ma insists on maintaining his policy of “economics over politics,” why would he rush to define cross-strait relations in accordance with the Constitution before he is even inaugurated?

After Beijing poured cold water on the “one country, two areas” formula, Wu dared not bring it up again in front of Lee at the Boao Forum.

One possibility is that it was an attempt by Ma to distract public attention from his government’s poor handling of major domestic issues, such as the US beef issue and public dissatisfaction with the rise in fuel prices. Another possibility is that it was to create some bargaining chips when facing possible pressure from Beijing for political talks in the future. It could be seen as Ma’s effort to “pre-empt” Beijing’s pressure for political negotiations.

The problem is, it demonstrates Ma’s flip-flop decisionmaking style, as well as a huge lack of transparency when it comes to crucial issues related to cross-strait relations.

This constitutes uncertainty and danger.

Liu Shih-chung is director of the research center at the Taipei-based Taiwan Brain Trust.

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