Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) yesterday denied media reports that Beijing has pressured the Taipei City Government to push forward the date of this year’s Taipei-Shanghai forum so it would have an opportunity to reassert the so-called “1992 consensus” before May 20 when the incoming Democratic Progressive Party government is to take office.
Ko said the forum would proceed in August as scheduled.
The “1992 consensus” refers to a supposed understanding reached during cross-strait talks in 1992, saying that both Taiwan and China acknowledge that there is “one China,” with each side having its own interpretation of what “China” means.
In 2006, former Mainland Affairs Council minister Su Chi (蘇起) admitted he made up the term in 2000, before the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) handed power to the DPP.
On other matters, Ko brushed off a Liberty Times (the Taipei Times’ sister newspaper) report that said the poor showing of a fundraiser for next year’s Summer Universiade was caused by a lack of mutual trust between the city government and the private sector as a result of Ko’s belligerent attitude toward corporations.
Ko said the poor economy was to blame for the poor fundraising effort.
The report said probes into firms involved in build-operate-transfer projects had generated ill-feeling toward the city government.
The city government has yet to secure any funds from the private sector for the sporting event and has marked down its fundraising goal from NT$2 billion to NT$890 million (US$61.6 million to US$27.4 million), the report said.
Ko said his administration’s most valuable quality is the high level of transparency in its standard operating procedures, which he said would encourage firms to undertake jobs for the city government over the long run.
He called on corporations to contribute capital toward the costs of the Universiade, saying that the event is significant not just for Taipei, but for the entire nation.