Cross-strait trade talks center on tax cuts, special rules of origin

Cross-strait trade talks center on tax cuts, special rules of origin Taipei, Nov. 22 (CNA) Taxation reductions and special rules of origin would be among the four major topics on the second day of the 12th round of negotiations on an agreement on trade in goods between Taiwan and China, the Ministry of Economic Affairs said Sunday. During the talks, which are scheduled to run from Nov. 21 to Nov. 23, Taiwanese negotiators are seeking to see tariffs reduced on their country's products shipped to China, the ministry said. But negotiators from both sides still need to narrow their differences on tax reductions and special rules of origin, which decide how much local processing should take place for key sectors such as machine tools and automobiles to receive tariff reductions on these products, the ministry said. The Taiwan side is also seeking to remove technical barriers to trade (TBT) and to discuss trade remedy measures during the talks, according to the ministry. On the first day of the cross-strait negotiations on Saturday, Taiwan and China had reached a consensus on the chapters of customs procedures, sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) measures, and the rule of origin. Taiwan's negotiating team was led by Foreign Trade Bureau Director-General Yang Jen-ni (楊珍妮) and Industrial Development Bureau Director-General Wu Ming-ji (吳明機). On the Chinese side, Sun Tong (孫彤), head of the Chinese Ministry of Commerce's Department of Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau Affairs, led a 27-member delegation at the talks. The trade in goods agreement is a follow-up to the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) that Taiwan and China signed on June 30, 2010 to boost bilateral trade. Taiwan expects the negotiations to be completed by the end of this year. (Courtesy of CNA)