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Nation must cope with globalization: premier

TAIPEI--Premier Jiang Yi-huah said at the opening of the National Conference on Economic and Trade Affairs in Taipei on Saturday that globalization is an unavoidable trend and Taiwan needs an appropriate strategy to deal with it.

Taiwan should consult public opinion on ways to boost Taiwan's economy amid globalization, Jiang said, adding that Taiwan cannot be left behind as many countries lower import duties and strengthen the integration of their workforces to enhance their competitiveness.

Jiang acknowledged concerns that globalization could lead to a widening of the rich-poor divide, affect the flow of capital and cause Taiwan's industrial base to be hollowed out, and he said Taiwan should confront the issues and find solutions to them.

Echoing Jiang's view, former Vice Premier Lin Hsin-i said that going global will not hurt Taiwan's economy and that any policy that benefited the economy was worth implementing.

Lin cautioned, however, that the government needed to operate more effectively, and that its tax system in particular had ample room for improvement.

He argued that tax reform could attract overseas Taiwanese businesses to return home to invest.

Jiang, meanwhile, highlighted the fact that the three-day conference was to be broadcast live online and will proceed in an open and transparent manner.

In addition, an online platform has been set up for the first time for netizens to exchange opinions and present different perspectives, Jiang said.

The conference will explore Taiwan's economic development in a globalized world and strategies for regional economic integration and cross-strait trade in the hope of forging a national consensus on the development of Taiwan's economic and trade future, according to the Executive Yuan, the event's organizer.

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