China-Taiwan trade talks this week

The first round of talks on a major trade pact between Taiwan and China will be held in Beijing this week, Taiwanese officials and state press said yesterday.

The Taiwanese delegation will be led by Kao Koong-lian, deputy chairman of the quasi-official Straits Exchange Foundation, the foundation said in a statement.

During the one-day discussions to be held on Tuesday "the negotiators will sort out procedural issues for the more talks to come", said Maa Shaw-chang, the foundation's Deputy Secretary-General.

The Chinese side will be led by Zheng Lizhong, Vice-President of the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait, according to the foundation.

The two bodies have been authorised by their governments to handle negotiations between Taiwan and China in the absence of official contacts.

The discussions are aimed at boosting commercial ties between the two rivals by normalising trade arrangements, said Xinhua news agency. The Taiwanese delegates will include Huang Chih-peng, head of the Bureau of Foreign Trade. Reports said Taiwan's delegation would be led by Huang, the island's top negotiator during the previous rounds.

 

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