Sun, Sep 07, 2014 - Page 1 News List

New club ties KMT, businesses in China

By Alison Hsiao  /  Staff reporter

President Ma Ying-jeou adjusts the microphone while campaigning at a gathering of China-based Taiwanese businesspeople in Taipei yesterday. Ma told the group: “We [the KMT] are standing on the right side of history.”

Photo: CNA

The Cross-Strait Taiwanese Business People Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Fan Club celebrated its establishment in Taipei yesterday. President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九), who was present at the event as KMT chairman, called on Taiwanese businesspeople working in China to support the KMT, which he said is “on the right side of history.”

Top echelons from the party and KMT candidates attended the celebration, organized by Taiwanese working in China to rally votes and encourage businesspeople to return to participate in the Nov. 29 9-in-1 elections.

KMT vice-chairpersons Wu Den-yih (吳敦義), Tseng Yung-chuan (曾永權) and Hung Hsiu-chu (洪秀柱), KMT Central Review Committee Chairmen Lin Join-sane (林中森) and Chiang Pin-kung (江丙坤) — who are respectively the current Straits Exchange Foundation chairman and the former chairman — KMT Taipei mayoral candidate Sean Lien (連勝文) and Taoyuan County Commissioner John Wu (吳志揚) were present at the event alongside business representatives from the nation’s 22 cities and counties.

The founding of a KMT fan club among Taiwanese businesspeople working in China for local elections rather than a national election has no precedent.

The reason might have been hinted at by Ma’s speech at the event, in which he said that in some regions: “We are having a close [election] fight.”

“The KMT is on the right side of history and on the side consistent with the needs of the people,” Ma said, highlighting that the party won the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections with the support of Taiwanese businesspeople and that they could again play a key role this year.

Ma reiterated his view that the suspicion that former Mainland Affairs Council deputy minister Chang Hsien-yao’s (張顯耀) leaked state secrets was only “a small ripple in the strong wave of cross-strait developments.”

Ma also championed his efforts in improving cross-strait relations, emphasizing that the student-led Sunflower movement might have hindered the progress of the cross-strait service trade agreement, but did not prevent China’s Taiwan Affairs Office director Zhang Zhijun (張志軍) from visiting Taiwan.

Berating opposition parties for having what he termed “knee-jerk protests” whenever encountering China, Association of Taiwan Investment Enterprises on the Mainland chairman Kuo Shan-hui (郭山輝) said the service pact “must be passed regardless of its flaws,” as the pact is for the overall “uplift and cannot be opposed for a few blemishes or simply for the sake of opposition.”

Kuo said the 138 associations of Taiwanese businesspeople in China would make lists of names to guide the mobilization of potential voters.

The associations are also to help potential voters obtain group discounts for airplane tickets in order to encourage their return for the election, he added.

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