A slew of trade deals negotiated by Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) to sell NT$5.2 billion (US$168.5 million) worth of Taiwanese agricultural products to cities in southern China is under Beijing’s direct control, a Hong Kong newspaper reported on Tuesday.
The Chinese-language Sing Pao Daily News reported that the deals were negotiated through Chinese state-owned enterprises, and that they fell under the supervision of China’s State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission.
A deal negotiated in Hong Kong also falls under Beijing’s control, as it was handled through the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in Hong Kong and Macau, the report said.
Han last week visited Hong Kong, Macau, and Shenzhen and Xiamen to negotiate trade deals.
At a news conference on Tuesday, China’s Taiwan Affairs Office (TAO) praised Han’s trip for making achievements in the areas of trade, education and cultural exchanges, tourism and the establishment of mechanisms for cross-strait interactions.
TAO spokesman An Fengshan (安峰山) said the achievements were the embodiment of the concept that “both sides of the Taiwan Strait belong to one family.”
“This demonstrates that on the foundation of persisting with the ‘1992 consensus,’ there are vast prospects for cities on both sides of the Taiwan Strait,” An said, adding that he “welcomes the strengthening of city-to-city exchanges on this foundation.”
However, Sing Pao said that Han’s deal in Hong Kong was facilitated through the Hong Kong Liaison Office and made with a company under the supervision of Beijing using the Fujian Provincial Government as a proxy.
The deal in Shenzhen was made with a firm that is the city government’s sole appointed wholesaler of “grade A” agricultural products, it said, adding it was made under China’s National Development and Reform Commission.
“It is clear that the deals Han Kuo-yu reaped on his trip to China were gifts from the Chinese Communist Party [CCP],” the report said.
The report implied that Beijing intended to raise Han’s stature in Taiwan, thereby securing his victory should he run in next year’s presidential election.
One unnamed analyst said that, while Han’s deals look good on paper, Taiwan’s produce market is already overly reliant on China.
About 97 percent of exported Golden Diamond brand pineapples are sold to China and Beijing can control the fruit’s price, the analyst said.
The so-called “1992 consensus” — a term former Mainland Affairs Council chairman Su Chi (蘇起) in 2006 admitted making up in 2000 — refers to a tacit understanding between the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) and the CCP that both sides acknowledge there is “one China,” with each side having its own interpretation of what “China” means.
DOING ENOUGH? The HPA budgets NT$1.3 billion to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but has no separate budget to fight teen drinking, a doctor said The government should step up alcohol education and prevention efforts, and allocate more of the budget to it, doctors said on Friday, citing the high consumption of alcohol among Taiwanese adolescents. One out of four 12-to-17-year-olds has consumed alcohol, said Yen Tsung-hai (顏宗海), director of Linkou Chang Gung Memorial Hospital’s Department of Clinical Toxicology. The Health Promotion Administration (HPA) budgets NT$1.3 billion (US$43.9 million) annually to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but it has not allocated a separate budget for preventing teenage drinking or excessive alcohol use, Yen said. “There is no so-called ‘safe drinking level’ for minors,” because any amount consumed
The Fancy Frontier manga and anime expo held in Taipei over the weekend has sparked controversy, after a participant allegedly contravened the Act on Offenses Against Sexual Morality (妨害風化罪) by publicly exposing her private parts during a photo shoot. The two-day event opened at the Expo Dome at the Taipei Expo Park on Saturday, attracting numerous comic and anime creators, cosplayers, photographers and fans. Allegedly, a female cosplayer who was not wearing any underwear lifted up her skirt and revealed her private parts at an outdoor photography area near the venue. Event organizers said yesterday that to prevent indecent exposure, they have since
DREAMING OF TRAVEL: About 7,000 people applied for the experience, with about 60 chosen for the first flight yesterday, which includes boarding an airplane Starved of the travel experience during COVID-19? Taipei International Airport (Songshan airport) has the solution — a fake itinerary where you check in, go through passport control and security, and even board the aircraft. You just never leave. The airport yesterday began offering travelers the chance to do just that, with about 60 people eager to get going, albeit to nowhere. About 7,000 people applied to take part, with the winners chosen by random. More fake flight experiences are to take place in the coming weeks. “I really want to leave the country, but because of the pandemic, lots of flights cannot fly,”
YOUNGEST PATIENT: Cases of botulism have been only sporadically reported over the past few years, with two in 2015, six in 2016 and none in the past three years The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) yesterday reported the nation’s first case of infant botulism this year, a four-month-old boy in northern Taiwan, as well as five new cases of Japanese encephalitis confirmed last week. The boy was introduced to homemade solid food in the middle of last month, but began to experience constipation and loss of appetite on June 23, CDC Epidemic Intelligence Center Deputy Director Guo Hung-wei (郭宏偉) said, adding that he was taken to the hospital when he developed a fever and shortness of breath on June 25. In the hospital, the boy also experienced a rapid heartbeat, limb