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Fri, Nov 16, 2001 - Page 24 News List

Steelmakers forging their own cross-strait relations


Steel manufacturers on both sides of the Taiwan Strait have agreed to set up a channel for dialogue and conduct regular exchanges, Wang Chung-yu (王鍾渝), president of the Taiwan Steel & Iron Industrial Association (TSIIA, 台灣鋼鐵公會), said yesterday.

Wang, who returned to Taiwan Tuesday after leading a delegation of steel executives to Beijing, noted that the steel trade between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait has been brisk in recent years. He cited last year as an example, with mainland China exporting 2.24 million tons of bulk steel products -- like steel sheets and bars -- to Taiwan, the largest importer of bulk steel from the country.

Taiwan also exported 3.3 million tons of steel products to China last year, making the mainland the largest export destination for Taiwan steel products.

In view of the brisk steel trade across the strait, Wang said that his delegation recently visited Beijing to meet with its China counterpart, the Iron & Steel Industry Association (ISIA, 中國鋼鐵工業協會), hoping to build communication channels between the two and to avoid trade clashes after the entry of both sides into the World Trade Organization (WTO).

Wang's delegation included Tung Ho Steel Enterprise (東和鋼鐵) Chairman Ho Tseng-hsiung (侯貞雄), chairman of Feng Hsin Iron & Steel Co (豐興鋼鐵), Lin Ming-ju (林明儒) and Chou Juo-chi (鄒若齊), vice president of China Steel Corp (中鋼).

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