Thu, Feb 24, 2005 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan risks lowering its status in US: TSU

HIGH-TECH MESS If the government continues to relax its regulations regarding the export of high-technology skills to China, it could be penalized by the US, the TSU says

By Ko Shu-ling  /  STAFF REPORTER

Taiwan is risking lowering its status among the US government's high-technology export countries if it continues to relax regulations regarding the export of high-tech know-how and skills to China, Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU) lawmakers warned yesterday.

Meanwhile, the caucus also requested an apology from United Microelectronics Corp (UMC) chairman Robert Tsao (曹興誠) for his remarks about the assembly.

According to TSU Legislator David Huang (黃適卓), Taiwan is listed among the Group B-category countries by the US government in terms of high-tech exports.

Group B refers to countries which do not pose a threat to the US and world peace. Countries listed in Group C are considered to pose a threat to the US' national security.

TSU Lawmaker Mark Ho (何敏豪) said that it is unwise and inappropriate for the government to further open up China-bound investment regulations.

"Until the UMC case is thoroughly investigated and settled, the government should rein in its enthusiasm for relaxing high-tech investment regulations," he said.

"While the government boasts its `active opening-up and effective management' (積極開放, 有效管理) economic strategy, we've seen the government do a poor job in effectively managing China-bound investment."

Ho made the remarks yesterday morning after holding an hour-long closed-door meeting with Mainland Affairs Council and National Security Bureau officials to discuss the UMC matter and its impact on national security.

TSU caucus whip Lo Chih-ming (羅志明) said that if the government fails to "fill the gap" in high-tech exports caused by the UMC matter, the US government will be forced to express its concern over Taiwan's high-tech exports and possibly take action.

"The UMC case has made the US government question the government's ability to effectively manage the export of high-tech knowhow and equipment," Lo said.

"The case reflects the incompetence of the National Security Bureau and the Mainland Affairs Council," he said.

Lo also pledged to push the passage of a technology-protection bill during this legislative session, which is scheduled to convene on Friday.

"If any other legislative caucuses boycott the bill and stall the legislation process, we will make public the names of those lawmakers opposing the bill and let them face the public's criticism in their constituencies," he said.

In addition to supporting Huang's opinion, TSU Legislator Tseng Tsan-teng (曾燦燈) demanded an apology from Tsao, who had described TSU lawmakers as "a bunch of clowns without much common sense."

"If he doesn't apologize within three days, we will follow with a lawsuit," he said.

"Although there are not many of us, we are committed to protect the nation's security," he said.

Tseng also called on the government to suspend approving more local wafer manufacturers' requests for establishing factories in China, unless the nation is ready to export its sensitive technology skills.

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