Tai­wan has shot at 2nd-round talks for TPP: Wang

The China Post - - TAIWAN BUSINESS - BY ENRU LIN

At the end of the year, Tai­wan may have the chance to join talks to be­come a sec­ond-round mem­ber of the Trans-Pa­cific Part­ner­ship (TPP), Leg­isla­tive Speaker Wang Jyn-ping ( ) said in Taipei yesterday.

First- round mem­bers of the TPP fi­nal­ized the trade bloc in At­lanta, Ge­or­gia yesterday, af­ter ne­go­tia­tors broke through an im­passe on patent pro­tec­tion for biologic drugs that had stalled the agree­ment.

Talks for a sec­ond round of mem­ber economies could be­gin later in 2015, ac­cord­ing to Wang.

“At the end of this year, we may have the op­por­tu­nity to par­tic­i­pate in talks for the sec­ond tranche of the TPP,” he said at a fo­rum on prospects for Tai­wan’s biotech­nol­ogy in­dus­try in re­gional trade blocs.

Yang Jen-ni ( ), di­rec­tor­gen­eral of Tai­wan’s Bureau of For­eign Trade un­der the Min­istry of Eco­nomic Af­fairs, said that a fi­nal rat­i­fied TPP could be an­nounced in Novem­ber.

Since 2014, task teams un­der the Ex­ec­u­tive Yuan have been pre­par­ing Tai­wan for mem­ber­ship in the TPP and the China-backed Re­gional Com­pre­hen­sive Eco­nomic Part­ner­ship (RCEP), she said at the fo­rum.

The cen­tral gov­ern­ment has been build­ing the le­gal foun­da­tion for the best pos­si­ble out­come dur­ing ne­go­ti­a­tions for sec­ond-round mem­bers of the TPP, she said.

“The United States told us we could use its free-trade agree­ment with South Korea as a guide­line, and with that we have rounded up a com­pre­hen­sive list of re­quired re­forms,” Yang said.

She said the gov­ern­ment has con­ducted im­pact assess­ments and con­cluded that non- par­tic­i­pa­tion in the TPP would cost the most in terms of to­tal trade value and real gross do­mes­tic prod­uct.

Ac­cord­ing to the Min­istry of Eco­nomic Af­fairs, real GDP growth is forecast to rise by 1.95 per­cent if Tai­wan joins the TPP — and to fall by 0.27 per­cent if Tai­wan does not, be­cause of dis­crim­i­na­tory treat­ment in for­eign mar­kets.

The cen­tral gov­ern­ment is also eval­u­at­ing risks that TPP mem­ber­ship poses to spe­cific in­dus­tries and is de­vel­op­ing pro­grams to mit­i­gate the ef­fects of free trade, she said.

Sup­port for Biotech­nol­ogy

At the fo­rum, Vice Premier Si­mon Chang ( ) said that the Cab­i­net was pre­pared to help Tai­wan’s biotech­nol­ogy in­dus­try adapt to a lib­er­al­ized mar­ket.

The cen­tral gov­ern­ment will make pric­ing pro­to­cols more trans­par­ent, fast track ac­cred­ited prod­ucts to the mar­ket and oth­er­wise pro­mote ex­ports of ac­tive phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal in­gre­di­ents, new drugs and med­i­cal equip­ment to ex­pand global mar­ket share, which is cur­rently at less than 1 per­cent, he said.

Enru Lin, The China Post

Yang Jen-ni ( ), di­rec­tor-gen­eral of Tai­wan’s Bureau of For­eign Trade, speaks at a fo­rum on the prospects for Tai­wan’s biotech­nol­ogy in­dus­try in re­gional trade blocs, yesterday. Yang said a fi­nal rat­i­fied TPP could be an­nounced in Novem­ber.

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