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June 26, 2017

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Hau's talk in China raises criticism in Taiwan

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌) on Tuesday set off on a trip to China, during which he made comments regarding the signing of the Taiwan Strait Service Trade Pact, raising criticism from lawmakers in Taiwan.

Kuomintang (KMT) lawmaker Liao Cheng-ching (廖正井) said Hau "probably" does not clearly understand the content of the Taiwan Strait Service Trade Pact, and therefore said something "inappropriate" in mainland China.

KMT Legislator Lin Yu-fang (林郁方) said that if Hau has a different opinion in regard to the pact, he should communicate with the government, adding that Hau could talk with the premier, finance minister or even the president.

Lin noted that as Hau made the comments in mainland China, mainlanders may think officials in Taiwan do not stand together on the issue.

Hau led a delegation including former Taipei EasyCard Corporation Chairman Sean Lien (連勝文), Terry Gou (郭台銘), founder and chairman of Hon Hai Group, and Want Want China Times Group (旺旺中時集團) Chairman Tsai Eng-meng (蔡衍明) to attend the fourth Taipei-Shanghai City Forum.

After Hau arrived in Shanghai on Tuesday afternoon, he immediately met Zhang Zhi-jun (張志軍), director of the Taiwan Affairs Office (TAO). Hau and Zhang discussed issues of cross-strait business and politics for over an hour, according to the Taipei City Government.

In a press statement released by the Taipei government last night, Hau said the recent controversial signing of the Taiwan Strait Service Trade Pact has raised concerns among Taiwanese people, noting that mainland China should establish mutual trust with Taiwan and reassure the Taiwanese people that the pact will not harm their interests, and that Beijing should strive for Taiwanese support on the issue.

Hau's talk with Zhang, however, raised criticism among KMT legislators.

In response, Hau responded that in regarding to the pact, he stands together with the president and the Executive Yuan, noting that he only suggested that mainland China should take into consideration Taiwanese concerns on the issue and reassure the Taiwanese people.

Government Should Do What it Should be Doing: Hau

After attending a forum concerning Taipei industrial opportunities, Hau told reporters that "a government should do what it should be doing, and act when it should be acting in critical circumstances." He added that what the Taipei City Government should do at the moment is create a beneficial industrial environment for local firms.

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