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Taiwan Tati Cultural and Educational Foundation

Japanese ‘Taiwan Relations Act’ urged


Japanese politicians take part in the inauguration ceremony of the Japan-Taiwan Co-Prosperity Chiefs Alliance in Tokyo on Thursday.
Photo: Lin Tsuei-yi, Taipei Times

An alliance of Japanese local government heads on Thursday called on Tokyo to draw up a Japanese version of the US’ Taiwan Relations Act to improve bilateral cooperation on security.

The legislation would create a bilateral channel for security and political dialogues that both countries need, the Japan-Taiwan Co-Prosperity Chiefs Alliance told its founding event in Tokyo.

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Post-referendum enmity to persist

As the dust settles following Saturday’s referendums, some facts are emerging.

First, none of the four referendums secured the legally required threshold and, despite this, the majority of voters ticked “no” for all four proposals — the position that was the most beneficial to Taiwan and was advocated for by the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and the Taiwan Statebuilding Party.

Although the government’s policies on energy, international trade and holding referendums separately from major elections can now continue, the only clear result was on the question of whether to restart construction of the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant in New Taipei City’s Gongliao District (貢寮).

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Cities can expand Taiwan’s role

As Taiwan’s international space remains constrained, formal government-to-government cooperation is often infeasible. Consequently, the utilization of alternative channels of international engagement, such as track II diplomacy or subnational diplomacy, remains key for Taiwan’s idiosyncratic, people-oriented strategy for global engagement.

On the quinquennial of the New Southbound Policy, and amid a newfound openness between Taiwan and Europe, it is timely to revisit the question of international subjectivity of Taiwanese cities and consider the role they can play in the nation’s quest to expand its international space.

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Taiwan should lead with kindness

The government’s reaction of withdrawing its economic and technical assistance from any country that decides to switch ties from Taiwan to the People’s Republic of China (PRC) is completely understandable, but is punishing scholarship students for the decisions that their governments made the right thing to do?

Taiwanese taxpayers cannot be asked to continue to support cooperation projects in countries that chose to break their relationship with Taiwan. Those countries are sure to receive more than enough economic incentives from the PRC government.

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PRC’s ally poaching helps Taiwan

The Straits Forum, the largest non-political platform between Taiwan and China, took place in China’s Fujian Province on Sunday last week.

Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference Chairman Wang Yang (汪洋) hosted the event, at which Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Eric Chu (朱立倫) gave a prerecorded video speech.

Days before the forum, on Thursday last week, Nicaragua announced that it had severed diplomatic relations with Taiwan.

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The irony of the KMT’s objections

The politics surrounding the government’s and the opposition’s referendum campaigns is throwing up supreme ironies that deserve comment, while also highlighting concerning — but entirely unsurprising — similarities between the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) tactics and the messaging of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).

It is a curious thing that whenever the KMT and its representatives criticize the actions of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) administration, it always sounds a little too much like a projection of guilt of the KMT’s authoritarian past.

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Newsflash


Democratic Progressive Party legislators Yeh Yi-jin, left, and Cheng Yun-peng display information about video streaming services by Tencent Holdings and Youku Tudou at a news conference at the Legislative Yuan in Taipei yesterday.
Photo: Chien Jung-fong, Taipei Times

Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lawmakers yesterday called on regulators to block Chinese media corporations from establishing a foothold in Taiwan, after the Chinese-language Liberty Times (sister newspaper of the Taipei Times) reported that Tencent Holdings (騰訊) and Youku Tudou (優酷) plan to start offering local video streaming services in May.