Fri, Aug 04, 2006 - Page 3 News List

TSU promises to monitor Su on investment cap

By Jimmy Chuang and Jewel Huang  /  STAFF REPORTERS , WITH AGENCIES

Premier Su Tseng-chang gestures during a press conference in Taipei yesterday.

PHOTO: AFP

The Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU) said yesterday that it would monitor Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) to make sure he sticks to his promise not to ease the ceilings on investment in China.

TSU caucus whip David Huang (黃適卓) was responding to Su's pledge on Wednesday to keep the 40 percent investment ceiling.

On Wednesday, the Cabinet announced that the regulations on the maximum value of a firm's investment in China -- now set at 40 percent of the net value of its investment in Taiwan -- would remain in effect.

The announcement was criticized because the consensus of the recent Conference on Sustaining Taiwan's Economic Development gave an impression that the Cabinet would relax some of its restrictions on cross-strait investment since the issue was listed as "other opinions," meaning it would serve as advice to the government.

Huang said that under the current system, companies whose paid-in capital is less than NT$5 billion (US$153.84 million), the cap on investment is 40 percent, while companies whose paid-in capital is between NT$5 billion and NT$10 billion, the ceiling is 30 percent and for those companies with paid-in capital of over NT$10 billion, the cap is 20 percent.

He said his party was worried that Su might scrap the "ladder" ceiling structure and set the cap at 40 percent for those companies whose paid-in capital is more than NT$5 billion.

"The TSU will not allow such an alternative way of opening," he said.

Hu said the party would monitor the Executive Yuan's stance on cross-strait trade and whether Su was keeping his promise.

During a meeting with the press yesterday, Su reaffirmed that his attitude toward the investment cap of 40 percent was unchanged.

"I never said that the 40 percent cap would be lifted. I reiterated it yesterday because the issue was discussed during last week's conference ... but it was not listed as one of the consensus decisions. As a result, of course, it will not be part of our policy for now," he said.

Su's reaffirmation came amid reports that several Democratic Progressive Party heavyweights had questioned his cross-strait policy in a DPP Central Standing Committee meeting on Wednesday.

Vice President Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) and Presidential Office Secretary-General Mark Chen (陳唐山) were among those who questioned Su about the effectiveness of last week's conference and whether his China policy would lean toward a loosening of investment restrictions.

DPP Chairman Yu Shyi-kun said yesterday that it was normal for party members to express different ideas on policies, and none of them meant to target Su personally.

"Speaking out about their ideas in the meeting did not mean that members had `besieged' the premier," Yu said.

He said it was a DPP tradition for members to freely voice their opinions. If no one dared to open their mouths, then people would criticize the DPP for being autocratic, he said.

In other developments, Su told the press yesterday that the government would welcome anybody from any country as long as they were friendly and they respected Taiwan.

"We are confident of our democratic achievements and are proud to show them to the world," he said, in response to a question about whether Chen Yunlin (陳雲林), the director of China's Taiwan Affairs Office, could visit the country.

"However, for those visitors who do not respect us, who are planning to do something to hurt us, I must say, these people will never be welcomed to our country," Su said.

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