2020/9/24  
英文 English 
No confirmation yet, but economics chief ‘welcomes’ visit by US under secretary (2020/09/16)

Taiwan officials still have not confirmed the Thursday arrival of U.S. Under Secretary of State Keith Krach. But according to an industry group leader, the American Institute in Taiwan is set to hold an event this week, at which Krach will be a guest of honor. On Wednesday, economics minister Wang Mei-hua spoke about the visit, saying it represented a step forward in the bilateral relationship.

Economics minister Wang attended an industry strategy summit on Wednesday. She said strategic partnerships could create opportunities for Taiwan’s industrial transformation. This week an American under secretary of state is expected to arrive for trade talks that could lead to a bilateral trade agreement. Ahead of the visit, local industry leaders said they feared having little leverage during the talks, due to the high rank of the lead American negotiator.

Wang Mei-hua
Economics minister
The upcoming Taiwan-U.S. economic dialogue is actually a deepening of the preexisting Taiwan-U.S. industrial cooperation, as well as other forms of cooperation. When it comes to that cooperation, it’s not the case that, the higher ranked the official, the more they want. Also we very much welcome Krach and his delegation, because it’s a historically high level visit to Taiwan. It is very meaningful and symbolic. It represents another step forward in Taiwan-U.S. relationship.

So far, Wang and other Taiwan officials have stayed tightlipped on the details of Krach’s visit, from his itinerary to the issues on the agenda. On Wednesday, Wang also fielded questions about a new WTO ruling. The WTO has decided that Washington violated global trade rules when it imposed tariffs on China, drawing on a U.S. provision called Section 301. Speaking to reporters, Wang said the ruling was expected.

Wang Mei-hua
Economics minister
I believe the U.S. will have a response very soon. But it is true that the WTO Appellate Body has lost its judges. It will indeed be very difficult for the panel to hear cases. Actually everyone believes that the WTO really needs to reform.

According to WTO rules, the Dispute Settlement Body is to appoint seven judges to hear appeals from member states. But today only one judge is left, due to a protracted U.S. conflict with the court itself. According to WTO rules, at least three judges must be on the panel to deliberate, and so the court has been suspended since last Dec. 11.
中文 Chinese  
外界憂台談判籌碼低 王美花:沒有官越大要越多

美國國務次卿柯拉克將訪台,相關會談安排如何?外交部、經濟部至今仍保密到家,不過有工商團體憂心越高階官員來台,談判籌碼越低,對此經濟部長王美花說,沒有所謂官越大要越多,而且這個史上最高層級,象徵台美合作更進一步。

經濟部長王美花參加產業戰略高峰論壇,點出產業合作,是台灣產業轉型契機,眼看美國國務次卿柯拉克將訪台,被視為是開啟BTA大門,不過工商大老憂心,越高階官員來台,談判籌碼越低。

[[經濟部長 王美花]]
“我們這個台美的經濟對話,其實是一個深化台美之間的產業合作,還有各方面的合作,那我想這個合作沒有所謂的官越大,要的越多。而且我們也非常歡迎柯拉克可以帶團來訪問,因為這是有史以來這樣的一個高層次來台灣。這個也非常有實質意義跟象徵意義,代表台美之間又往前跨了一步”

對於柯拉克訪台行程、對談內容,經濟部、外交部至今仍保密到家,而外界也關注WTO最新判決,針對美對中發動301條款加徵關稅,判決美方違反世貿規則,王美花則說,意料之中。

[[經濟部長 王美花]]
“我想美方應該很快會有回應,不過現在確實上訴機構,因為法官都不見了,所以確實也很難去審理後續的案子,其實大家都認為說WTO,確實要再做一些改革”

WTO設置爭端解決機構(DSB),供成員國對判決不滿做出上訴申訴,原本有七名常設法官,因為各種原因只剩下一名,無法達到最低三人的議事和審查人數,從12月11日起就已經停擺。

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