Fri, Jun 02, 2017 - Page 3 News List

Cross-strait communication difficult: SEF

Staff writer, with CNA

Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF) Chairman Tien Hung-mao (田弘茂) on Wednesday said that the agency is having difficulty communicating with its Chinese counterpart, adding that the two sides of the Taiwan Strait need to resume talks.

It is difficult for the SEF to communicate with China’s Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits, but both sides should still seek opportunities for discussions, Tien said in Taoyuan at a meeting with Taiwanese businesspeople based in China.

The SEF would continue to express goodwill toward China and hopes for peaceful interaction across the strait, Tien said.

The two sides should seek cross-strait peace, he said, adding that they should work to resolve their differences, and resume cross-strait dialogue and communication for the benefit of the people on both sides.

The meeting was aimed at improving communication between businesspeople and the government so that Taipei can learn more about the difficulties they face in China and seek solutions, Tien said.

The meeting was also attended by Mainland Affairs Council Minister Katharine Chang (張小月), who spoke about the development of cross-strait ties and called on Beijing to express goodwill.

There needs to be an effort on both sides for cross-strait relations improve, Chang said.

She expressed hope that the two sides would seek to maintain cross-strait peace and stability, as well as to continue dialogue and explore the possibility of a new model for cooperation.

Cross-strait relations have cooled since President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) of the Democratic Progressive Party took office in May last year.

In June last year, China said that communication across the Taiwan Strait had been suspended, because the government refuses to accept the so-called “1992 consensus” as the foundation for the development of cross-strait relations.

The “1992 consensus” refers to a tacit understanding between the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) and the Chinese government that both sides acknowledge there is “one China,” with each side having its own interpretation of what “China” means.

Former Mainland Affairs Council chairman Su Chi (蘇起) in 2006 admitted making up the term in 2000.

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