The awesome John Tkacik rips the service pact.... (Taipei Times):
[The Singapore and N Zealand agreements] ASTEP and ANZTEC were signed under the WTO framework and enjoyed legal protection such as third party mediation and other resolutions and the equal stature of WTO members ensured a real increase in Taiwan’s export, whereas the cross-strait service trade agreement does not fall under such a category of trade agreements, he said.It's a pretty good analysis of the Service Pact, which KMT leaders in the legislature have already indicated could come into effect without a vote:
The tertiary sectors in Taiwan and China are fundamentally different; the Chinese government is heavily involved in all of its tertiary sector, leading to a larger scale and more xenophobia, while the Taiwanese tertiary sector is smaller, but more vibrant, Tkacik said.
Chinese industries opened to Taiwan in the agreements are in Fujian Province and are excessively restricted, Tkacik said, adding that this observations led him to believe the Chinese were simply treating Taiwan as an extension of Fujian Province.
The more competitive Taiwanese financial industry would only exert minimal influence on its Chinese counterpart, Tkacik said.
In response to media inquiries, Tkacik said that only a few would benefit from the service trade agreement despite the seemingly rising number of Taiwanese businesspeople asking the government to ratify the agreement.
On President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) administration’s claims that the service trade agreement would help Taiwan’s bid to join the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), Tkacik said the opposite would probably be true as the service trade agreement would only muddy waters on increased economic integration between Taiwan and the US due to the pact’s lack of transparency.
It may cause the US to reconsider whether Taiwan would be China’s backdoor into the US market, Tkacik added.
Yiin Chii-ming (尹啟銘), a former chairman of the Council of Economic Planning and Development, said that Article 61 of the Legislative Yuan Functions Act stipulated that all committees of the Legislative Yuan must complete the review of regulations promulgated by the Cabinet ministries within three months after the Legislature referred the regulations to the committees. If the committees could not complete the review within three months, the review of the regulations would be considered completed and it would come into effect automatically.ECFA is already seen as a failure, a poll last year found only 30% said it had improved their lives. Support for the pact is less than 35% (TISR) and the public overwhelmingly wants a line-by-line review, which the legislature won't give them and which the Ma Administration objects to. Naturally this complete rejection of the public's feelings will mean nothing at election time and the public will continue to vote the same people into office, because isn't my legislator great? He sent a bottle of whisky to my wedding.
It should be noted that the pact eliminates the protections that Taiwan has under the WTO framework, a friend pointed out in an email last week. This will gut Taiwan's trade and policy autonomy when facing China. As Tkacik pointed out in the article, PRC services firms, financial firms especially, are basically arms of the state. The opening in China is restricted to Fujian province and then with conditions attached, while all of Taiwan is open....and investors can bring their families.
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- Joseph Stiglitz says TPP is a disaster.
- Keating on the 'centuries of humiliation'.
- Taiwanese food and beverage firms in China hit by copying, other problems.
- The awesome Sean McCormack makes the international news for dog rescue.
- Candidacies announced -- Jason Hu formally announced for the KMT Taichung, Tsai Ing-wen for DPP chair. UDN poll has probable DPP candidate Lin Jia-lung up massively in Taichung. Don't believe it. No one I have talked to has said there is so great a difference, the expectation is that it will be close.
- EVENTS: Jerome Keating meet up: meeting on Sunday March 30 at 10 am. Historian David Curtis Wright will be talking on his recent research, KMT killings and imprisonment during the White Terror period on both Taiwanese and waishengren.
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