Taiwan, China to hold fresh round of talks next week


TAIPEI: Taiwan and China agreed on Tuesday to hold a fresh round of negotiations next week focusing on medical and health cooperation, officials said.
Top Taiwanese envoy Kao Koong-lian arranged the talks with Chinese counterpart Zheng Lizhong in Shanghai, said Taiwan’s Straits Exchange Foundation which handles civil exchanges with the mainland in the absence of official contacts. China’s chief negotiator Chen Yunlin is scheduled to fly to Taipei on Monday and hold talks with his Taiwanese counterpart Chiang Pin-kung the following day, it said.
At the centre of the talks — the sixth round since June 2008 – will be epidemic control measures and research and development of medicines, herbal medicines and emergency cures.
Chen will also meet Lai Shin-yuan, the chairman of the island’s major China policy decision-making body, the Mainland Affairs Council. But a much-anticipated deal to protect both sides’ cross-Strait investments will not be signed due to a lack of consensus “as the agreement involves complicated problems, and more discussions will be needed before it can be signed”, the Foundation said. Taiwanese businesses are among the biggest overseas players in mainland China, with at least 80 billion dollars invested, and there has been some clamour for a deal to be struck.