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  • President Ma meets Confederation of Asia-Pacific Chambers of Commerce and Industry President Benedicto V. Yujuico
  • Date
2014/03/14
President Ma meets with Confederation of Asia-Pacific Chambers of Commerce and Industry President Benedicto V. Yujuico. (01) President Ma meets with Confederation of Asia-Pacific Chambers of Commerce and Industry President Benedicto V. Yujuico. (02) President Ma meets with Confederation of Asia-Pacific Chambers of Commerce and Industry President Benedicto V. Yujuico. (03)
While meeting on the afternoon of March 14 with Confederation of Asia-Pacific Chambers of Commerce and Industry (CACCI) President Benedicto V. Yujuico and Mrs. Yujuico, President Ma Ying-jeou reiterated the importance to Taiwan of joining the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).

President Ma first noted Mr. Yujuico's wealth of political and business experience, pointing out that his visitor previously served as the Special Envoy of the Philippine President for Trade Relations, and has on many occasions led economic and trade delegations from the Philippines overseas to expand that nation's economic, trade, and investment relations. In addition, Mr. Yujuico serves as honorary chairman, senior consultant, or in other important positions at a number of companies in the United States, India, Brazil, and Russia. The president noted that over the past three years, in his capacity as CACCI President, Mr. Yujuico has met with government leaders and business representatives from 27 member nations, actively working to expand the organization's affairs and promote trade and economic ties among countries in the Asia-Pacific region.

President Ma commented that the CACCI was founded in 1966 in Taipei, and in 1980 formally established its permanent secretariat in Taipei, making it the only international business organization that is headquartered here. In addition, the president remarked, the CACCI is the largest private business organization of a regional nature whose members include 29 industry and commerce organizations from 27 countries throughout the Asia-Pacific region. The mission of the CACCI is to promote the development of economic and trade cooperation among countries within the region, the president said. The ROC, he said, is also a founding member, and the Chinese National Association of Industry and Commerce and the Chinese International Economic Cooperation Association are both formal members of the organization. The CACCI, the president stated, has made an important contribution to substantive economic and trade relations between Taiwan and its other member nations.

President Ma explained that in his New Year's Day address this year he announced that Taiwan would make every effort to create the economic conditions that would enable it to speedily join the TPP and the RCEP. Member states of the TPP and the RCEP make up 34% and 57% of Taiwan's total external trade, the president said, adding that joining these groups would make a huge difference to Taiwan. In addition, he stated, in a bid to promote market liberalization, Taiwan is also launching free economic pilot zones. This initiative will eliminate obstacles to the movement of people, goods, and capital, and help turn Taiwan into a "free economic island," he said.

In discussing Taiwan's economic and trade cooperation with other countries, President Ma said that before he took office in 2008 Taiwan had signed cooperation agreements with only a handful of nations and lagged far behind other Asian nations in this respect. Consequently, after he took office his administration actively engaged in contact with Taiwan's major trading partners. These efforts yielded the Cross-Straits Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement with mainland China, Taiwan's largest trading partner, and the signing of the Taiwan-Japan Bilateral Investment Arrangement, he said. Meanwhile, Taiwan and the United States in 2013 resumed negotiations under the Trade and Investment Framework Agreement, the president stated. In July of 2013, Taiwan and New Zealand signed the ANZTEC economic cooperation agreement, followed by the ASTEP economic partnership agreement with Singapore in November, he said. All of these developments are creating the economic conditions that will help Taiwan join the TPP and the RCEP, according to the president.

Lastly, President Ma reiterated praise for the contributions of the CACCI through its longstanding efforts to promote economic and trade cooperation among nations within the region. He further expressed hope that the organization will do what it can to help Taiwan join the TPP and the RCEP.
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