The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) legislative caucus on Thursday called on the executive branch to send the first agreement reached under the US-Taiwan Initiative on 21st-Century Trade to the legislature for review, following its approval by the Cabinet earlier that day.
The agreement was signed on June 1 by Taiwan’s Representative to the US Hsiao Bi-khim (蕭美琴) and American Institute in Taiwan Washington Office managing director Ingrid Larson.
The Cabinet approved the agreement on Thursday, and it is to be presented to President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文).
Photo: Chang Chia-ming, Taipei Times
According to the Conclusion of Treaties Act (條約締結法), after the agreement enters into force, it would be published and submitted to the Legislative Yuan “for reference,” unless the content involves state secrets or publishing it would threaten national security interests.
However, KMT legislative caucus whip William Tseng (曾銘宗) on Thursday said that the agreement should be submitted to the legislature for review because of the significant effect that international treaties have.
Tseng added that the KMT caucus has sent a request to Legislative Speaker You Si-kun, asking him to put the agreement on the agenda for cross-party discussions during a special legislative session scheduled to be held in the middle of this month.
Tseng’s proposal was met with a positive response from Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Chuang Jui-hsiung (莊瑞雄), who said that the Legislative Yuan has the right to review treaties before they come into effect.
Premier Chen Chien-jen (陳建仁) said the agreement has laid a solid legal foundation for Taiwan-US trade, while Cabinet spokesman Lin Tze-luen (林子倫) added that the pact would likely help Taiwan in its bid to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership.
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