Agree­ments signed be­tween Taipei, Shang­hai may­ors


Taipei City Mayor Ko Wen-je (

) con­tin­ued his visit to Shang­hai yesterday, while at­tempt­ing to ma­neu­ver away from open re­marks about the “1992 Con­sen­sus” as the two cities con­cluded four agree­ments for fu­ture ex­change.

As fore­seen, a to­tal of four mem­o­randa of un­der­stand­ing (MOU) were signed be­tween may­ors Ko and Yang, in­clud­ing an agree­ment on elec­tronic tick­et­ing and one for civil ser­vant ex­changes. Two other agree­ments were ex­change agree­ments among four ad­min­is­tra­tive dis­tricts of Shang­hai (Ji­nang and Min­hang dis­tricts) and Taipei City (Zhongzheng and Zhong­shan dis­tricts).

”Much may change in the world, but what is cer­tain to re­main con­stant is the friend­ship be­tween Taipei and Shang­hai,” Ko said at the open­ing cer­e­mony. High­light­ing his sur­gi­cal ex­pe­ri­ence, he stated that med­i­cal ex­changes be­tween the two cities could take pri­or­ity be­cause when it came to sav­ing lives po­lit­i­cal party align­ments can be tran­scended. He added that Tai­wan’s na­tional health in­sur­ance scheme was an ex­pe­ri­ence the city could share with its coun­ter­part.

Dur­ing the open­ing cer­e­mony of the fo­rum be­tween Tai­wan’s cap­i­tal and China’s largest me­trop­o­lis, Ko in­stead chose to em­pha­size that both sides of the Tai­wan Strait were “of one fam­ily” ( ) while in­sist­ing the re­la­tions be grounded on “four mu­tu­als” (mu­tual recog­ni­tion, un­der­stand­ing, re­spect and co­op­er­a­tion). He also touted his “new 2015 view” ( ) on crossstrait in­ter­ac­tions, ar­gu­ing that fu­ture ex­changes take a “peo­plefirst” ori­en­ta­tion backed up later by gov­ern­ment sup­port. Ko added that this model would pro­duce a more di­verse range of co­op­er­a­tive ex­change and cre­ativ­ity with added ef­fi­ciency.

Un­like his pre­de­ces­sor Hau Lung­bin ( ) who helped in­sti­tu­tion­al­ize the city-to-city ex­changes dur­ing his ten­ure as mayor, Ko only gave open­ing re­marks and did not de­liver ad­di­tional speeches at the fo­rum.

The MOU on elec­tronic tick­et­ing in­creased spec­u­la­tion that Taipei’s EasyCard pay-as-you-go sys­tem would in the fu­ture be com­pat­i­ble with trans­porta­tion sys­tems in Shang­hai. The city’s trans­port depart­ment head re­sponded by say­ing that dis­cus­sions on the is­sue are just be­gin­ning, and that card shapes or cur­rency val­ues were not to be con­sid­ered dilem­mas sur­round­ing fu­ture com­pat­i­bil­ity is­sues.

Ko re­port­edly did not re­spond di­rectly to Shang­hai Mayor Yang Xiong’s ( ) com­ments on Mon­day that the “1992 Con­sen­sus” served as the ba­sis for cross-strait ex­changes, in­clud­ing the cur­rent fo­rum be­tween the two cities.

”There wasn’t even time to eat,” Ko said re­fer­ring to yesterday’s ban­quet hosted by Yang in which the Taipei mayor said that he did not men­tion the “1992 Con­sen­sus,” say­ing in­stead that time was spent drink­ing. A spokesman for the city gov­ern­ment re­it­er­ated the mayor’s stance of “re­spect­ing and un­der­stand­ing” China’s view­points on the “1992 Con­sen­sus.”


Taipei City Mayor Ko Wen-jo, right, looks on as Shang­hai Mayor Yang Xiong ap­plauds dur­ing the open­ing cer­e­mony of a city-to-city sum­mit in Shang­hai yesterday. The two cities signed mem­o­ran­dums of un­der­stand­ing cov­er­ing elec­tronic billing, civil ser­vant de­vel­op­ment and ex­change among its ad­min­is­tra­tive dis­tricts. Ko is sched­uled to re­turn to Tai­wan later to­day.

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