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SEF chief hopeful for talks over cross-strait representative offices

BEIJING--Taiwan's new top negotiator with China, Lin Join-sane (林中森), expressed hope in Beijing Tuesday that the quasi-official bodies responsible for cross-Taiwan Strait engagements can soon begin negotiations on the setting up of representative offices in each other's territories.

Lin, who took over as chairman of the Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF, 海基會) Sept. 27, told his Chinese counterpart, Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits (ARATS, 海協會) President Chen Yunlin (陳雲林), that he hopes the SEF and ARATS can soon begin follow-up talks on the issue, as the two sides reached consensus during the eighth round of high-level cross-strait talks in August.

Lin made the remarks during a meeting with Chen at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, which was part of Lin's first trip to China since he assumed his new post.

He arrived in Bejing earlier in the day for the six-day visit that he said is aimed at gaining knowledge of issues concerning cross-strait exchanges and Taiwanese businesses operating in China.

After arriving in Beijing, Lin attended a reception hosted by the Beijing city government before visiting a memorial for Republic of China founder Sun Yat-sen.

Lin was scheduled to meet the following day with Wang Yi, director of the Taiwan Affairs Office of China's State Council, and Jia Qinglin, chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference.

He will also hold talks with Taiwanese businessmen operating in Beijing and Tianjin.

Lin will head to Shanghai Oct. 19 before traveling to Kunshan in Jiangsu province the day after. He is scheduled to return to Taiwan Oct. 21.

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