Tue, Apr 08, 2014 - Page 1 News List

Oversight bill lacks teeth, academics say

LEGISLATIVE REVIEW:Critics of the government bill on monitoring cross-strait pacts say it gives too much power to the Cabinet at the expense of the legislature

By Shih Hsiu-chuan  /  Staff reporter

The group’s proposal would require a 90-day consultation period with the legislature and legislative approval of the government’s plan to ink a deal with China before negotiations begin, as well as a 180-day period for civic groups to assess a proposed agreement after completion of negotiations and prior to the signing of the deal.

Just because the executive branch is constitutionally endowed with the power to negotiate international agreements does not mean the legislature and the public do not reserve the right to oversee such deals, said Chiou Wen-tsong (邱文聰), an associate research professor at Academia Sinica Institutum Jurisprudentiae.

Chung Yuan Christian University associate professor of law Hsu Wei-chun (徐偉群) said the proposal follows the same principles as those in South Korean legislation governing trade treaties, including ensuring public participation in the review of such pacts, legislative power to review the deals, human rights protection, information disclosure and stipulations on the government’s responsibilities.

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