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Report on China says Beijing's Taiwan policy still focused on trade

2012/05/15 11:12:41

Taipei, May 15 (CNA) China's policy on Taiwan will continue to focus mainly on trade and economic exchanges this year while stressing stability at home and energy partnerships with other countries abroad, according to a report on China by the Mainland Affairs Council.

The mainland's main priorities on Taiwan this year will still be to strengthen trade relations and promote follow-up negotiations on the Economic and Cooperation Framework Agreement, said the council, the Taiwanese agency responsible for coordinating the country's China policy, in its first quarter report on China.

Beijing will also try to promote cross-Taiwan Strait financial and industrial cooperation and encourage and conditionally support Chinese enterprises investing in Taiwan, the report said.

The council also expected China to expand cultural exchanges with Taiwan, strengthen exchanges with all of Taiwan's political parties, and send more senior Chinese officials to visit.

The report also foresaw major changes on China's political and social fronts this year.

Politically, the removal of Chongqing party chief Bo Xilai for "violations of party discipline" has undermined conservative forces and could affect the lineup of new leaders chosen at the 18th National Communist Party Congress later this year, said the report, which also predicted that Beijing would promote moderate political changes.

On the social front, factors contributing to instability remain, including tensions in Tibet and Xinjiang that have continued unabated, the report said, citing self-immolations and protests in Tibet.

There was also little optimism about China's fight against corruption, as seen by the several campaigns launched by local residents around China to protect themselves against corrupt practices, such as the one in Wukan that gained international publicity.

"Maintaining stability will be the priority of the mainland this year," the report said.

On foreign relations, the mainland is seeking energy partnerships with major oil-producing countries in the Middle East, while Premier Wen Jiabao's visit to Europe is aimed at promoting bilateral investment cooperation.

The recent visit to the United States by Vice Premier Xi Jinping, who is expected to succeed Hu Jintao later this year, was aimed at promoting Sino-American relations. During his visit, Xi stressed that Taiwan is the "most sensitive issue" at the core of China's relationship with the U.S, the report said.

China is also seeking actively to develop cooperative relations with neighboring and Southeast Asian nations, according to the report.

(By Tsai Su-chia and Lilian Wu)
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