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MOI to check whether Chinese official illegally seeking investments

2012/03/28 21:22:55

Taipei, March 28 (CNA) The Ministry of the Interior (MOI) will check to see whether a visiting Chinese official has been illegally soliciting Taiwanese investing in a China project, Interior Minister Lee Hong-yuan said Wednesday.

"Under the law, Chinese visitors to Taiwan for the purpose of trade and economic exchanges are not allowed to solicit investment," Lee said.

The MOI will collect evidence on the matter, and "will deal it in accordance with the law," Lee said in response to an opposition lawmaker's question on whether Fujian Province Governor Su Shulin has been seeking investments for a project based in Pingtan in his province.

Legislator Lee Chun-yi of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) said the MOI should expel Su if it is found that the Chinese official has indeed been trying to obtain investments in the project in contravention of Taiwan law.

According to DPP Legislator Tsai Chi-chang, Su touted the idea of joint cross-strait "planning, development, operation, and management" of the development project off Fujian province, at a dinner with Kuomintang Honorary Chairman Lien Chan.

"This is an open challenge to the Mainland Affairs Council," Tsai said, referring to the Cabinet-level body that charts the nation's China policy.

DPP caucus whip Pan Men-an said Su has been engaging in activities incompatible with the purpose of visit and he should be fined and expelled under the Regulations Governing the Relations between the People of the Taiwan Area and the People of the Mainland China Area.

Huang Wen-ling, a TSU caucus whip, said Su is visiting in the capacity of a professional but has been inviting Taiwanese to "return to their hometown in Fujian" and has said that dual currencies could be used in the Pingtang development project.

"Isn't that the 'one country, two systems' touted by China," Huang asked.

Su, who is leading a Fujian delegation on his five-day trip to Taiwan, visited a temple in Tainan on Wednesday morning.

He said his visit is not for the purpose of soliciting Taiwanese investment, getting involved in politics, or engaging in united front strategies.

The Pingtan project is a goodwill "gift" from Fujian to Taiwanese, and if they like it, they can go there at any time, he said. "So, I've not been soliciting investment," he said.

He also said that Fujian will buy more agricultural produce from Tainan, noting that the province bought more than 7,000 tons of Taiwanese fruit last year.

A protest organized by the TSU against Su's visit lasted less than 10 minutes. Police prevented the protesters from getting close to Su.

Su called on Lin I-shou, founder of the E-United Group, in Kaohsiung later that day.

Noting that 29 Fujian businesses have invested in Taiwan, Su said such investments will increase.

(By Justine Su, Tseng Yin-yu, Chang Jun-hsiang, Nancy Sha, and Lilian Wu)
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