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