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Taiwan MAC says 'limited' progress regarding charter flight talks with China

20-Sep-2005

TAIPEI (XFNews) - The Mainland Affairs Council (MAC), which oversees Taiwan's policy towards China, said the progress between Taipei and Beijing towards negotiations for charter cargo and passenger flights has been "limited".

"Progress has been limited. We have not come to the point where negotiations can take place," MAC chairman Joseph Wu said.

The cabinet had earlier indicated willingness to negotiate with the mainland on charter flights for both cargo and passenger services.

"We have appointed Taipei Airlines Association to discuss the matter (with Beijing). While China seems not very eager to negotiate on the matter, we will continue working very hard on this issue," Wu said.

When asked if there would be any decision to allow Taiwan's offshore bank units to upgrade into branch offices in China or other possible relaxation in financial ties, Wu said there is no immediate plan for such moves.

The official said the government continues to assess possible relaxation of rules governing China-bound investments in the semiconductor and liquid crystal display panel sectors, among others.

"We will draw conclusions when related-controlling schemes are prepared," he said, noting that "some (matters) are progressing toward conclusion soon but there is no timetable."

Applications from Powerchip Semiconductor Corp (5346.TW) and ProMOS Technologies Inc (5387.TW) for China-bound investments on semiconductor plants are still being assessed.

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co Ltd (2330.TW) is the only Taiwan-based wafer foundry with permission to set up manufacturing capacity on the mainland so far.

Wu reiterated the need for both Taiwan and China to "sit and talk" to ensure peace and stability across the Straits.

While Beijing has tried to bring cross-strait issues to the global front, the US has reaffirmed that there will be no changes in its policy towards Taiwan and China, he noted.


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