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September 24, 2017

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Activists to stage protest over Taiwan-China pact

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Local activists said yesterday that they will stage a protest later in the month to express their discontent over a recently signed service trade agreement between Taiwan and China.

The protest is scheduled to take place June 27 on Ketagalan Boulevard in front of the Presidential Office, Lu Chung-chin, president of the Taiwan Association of University Professors, said at a press briefing.

"The Taiwan government lacks an actual evaluation of the economic impact caused by the deal signed June 21 and it also lacks the capability and motivation to defend Taiwanese people's interests," Lu said.

The deal covers a wide range of areas and will influence the livelihoods of nearly 5 million people, according to Lu.

He made the remarks after the Taipei-based Chung-Hua Institution for Economic Research and the Ministry of Economic Affairs released a report on the service trade pact.

The report, released earlier this week, said that the new accord is expected to increase Taiwan's gross domestic product by some US$100 million, or 0.03 percent, and create nearly 12,000 jobs.

Despite the research result, Kenneth Lin, an economics professor at National Taiwan University, echoed Lu's view at the press briefing, saying the service trade pact violates democratic values.

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