Taiwan is very willing to address farm product issues with other countries, but food safety remains the top priority when discussing these matters, Representative to the US Stanley Kao (高碩泰) said on Sunday.
“These individual issues should not be viewed as a premise for Taiwan and the United States to conduct negotiations on farm products,” Kao said at a news conference in Washington, adding that the Taiwanese government is transparent when handling such matters.
“The government will continue to negotiate with the US on the entry of US pork and beef to Taiwan in line with international practices, and devise management regulations based on scientific standards and basis,” he said.
Amid grave public concern and strong opposition, the Taiwanese government has maintained a ban on US pork products containing the leanness enhancing drug ractopamine since 2006.
However, the country relaxed its ban of the drug in US beef products in 2012 due to pressure from Washington.
The issue recently returned to the public eye again after the US reiterated in its 2018 Trade Policy Agenda and 2017 Annual Report that the ban remains an obstacle to the clinching of a free-trade agreement between the two countries.
Asked about potential impact from the US’ decision to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum products, Kao said that the government has been closely monitoring follow-up developments and would report to the WTO regarding certain products if necessary.
Communication channels between Taiwan and the US are smooth and Taiwan’s representative office in Washington would consult the US side to gain a deeper understanding of its overall trade and economic policy to assess any possible impact on Taiwan’s businesses and products, he said.
As to the passage of the Taiwan Travel Act by the US Senate, Kao called it a positive development and a friendly gesture.
He also expressed hope that a broader foundation and basis would be created for exchanges of visits by ranking officials between the two countries.
Asked whether any arrangements have been made to facilitate visits by Taiwanese ranking officials to the US, Kao said he has not received any such instruction, but added that it remains a goal for him to pursue.
A study published by online booking platform Expedia revealed searches for travel to Taipei have ballooned 2,786 percent following the lifting of COVID-19 pandemic travel restrictions due to the city being a “designation dupe” for Seoul. The TikTok trend for duping — referring to substituting a designation for a more inexpensive alternative — helped propel interest in Taipei, it said in a consumer survey titled “Unpack ‘24,” which was conducted from September to October in 14 countries. Location dupes are “every bit as delightful as the tried-and-true places travelers love,” Expedia trend tracker Melanie Fish said of the year’s popular alternatives, which
SAFETY IN REGULATION: The proposal states that Chiayi should assess whether it is viable to establish such a district and draft rules to protect clients and sex workers The Chiayi City Council passed a motion yesterday to assess the viability of establishing a regulated red-light district. The council yesterday held its last session of the year, at which its fiscal 2024 budget was approved, along with 61 other proposals. The proposal to assess the viability of establishing a red-light district was put forward by independent Chiayi City Councilor Molly Yen (顏色不分藍綠支持性專區顏色田慎節). The proposal cited 2011 amendments to the Social Order Maintenance Act (社會秩序維護法), which stipulate that city and county governments can pass autonomous regulations on the sex trade to manage the industry and guarantee industry workers’ rights. A ban on the
A small-scale protest that called on the government to cancel its plan to welcome Indian migrant workers in a bid to tackle Taiwan’s labor shortage was held in Taipei yesterday. During the protest, comprised of a few dozen people staged in front of the Presidential Office on Ketagalan Boulevard, the protest’s chief initiator, a woman identified only as “Yuna” said they wanted the central government to reconsider allowing migrant workers from India to enter Taiwan. Most people in Taiwan had little knowledge about the potential plan to allow in Indian migrant workers until a report in the media last month, she
STABILITY AND CHANGE: Flagging in recent polls, Ko this week pledged to maintain President Tsai’s foreign policy, with an emphasis on improving China relations Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) Chairman and presidential candidate Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) yesterday reiterated that he is “deep-green at heart” in response to accusations that he is pivoting his campaign to align closer with the ideology of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) in the face of flagging polls. Ko made the remark at an agricultural policy conference in Taipei, repeating his comments from an interview with CTS News a day earlier. Ko told the CTS host that he would continue to pursue President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) national defense and foreign policy in general, but with an emphasis on establishing a rapport with