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Mainland Affairs Council

CHRONOLOGY

2011 Jan.~ 2011 Jun.

January 1, 2011
At a memorial ceremony for the centenary of the Republic of China, President Ma Ying-jeou delivers a New Year's Day Message entitled "Building Up Taiwan and Invigorating Chinese Heritage." He states that peace in the Taiwan Strait is the foundation for peace and prosperity throughout East Asia as well as the joint responsibility of both sides. The people on both sides of the Taiwan Strait share a common desire to shelve disputes and strive for long-term peaceful development of cross-strait ties. The authorities on both sides should put an end to conflicts via rapprochement and replace confrontation with cooperation. At this stage, any advocacy of a unilateral change to the status quo would affect the peaceful development of cross-strait relations. The two sides of the Strait should not quarrel over political power, independence versus reunification, or Taiwan's breathing room on the international stage. They should instead focus on encouraging and helping each other grow in terms of the core values of freedom, democracy, human rights, and rule of law. Taiwan cares about how human rights develop in mainland China because it is a core value that our country holds dear. It is also a key yardstick against which to measure the distance between the two sides, and a tool for bringing the two sides closer together.

January 4, 2011
The Ministry of Education announces the Regulations Regarding the People of the Mainland Area to Study in Taiwanese Institutions of Higher Education. It also states that the first group of Mainland students will arrive in Taiwan this September.

January 4, 2011
The Executive Yuan officially approves the revised Regulations on Recognition of Academic Credentials from the Mainland Area. The regulations will serve as a basis for the Ministry of Education in recognizing Mainland academic credentials and related affairs.

January 6, 2011
When receiving a delegation of Canadian parliamentarians, President Ma Ying-jeou states that as many as 1.4 million mainland Chinese tourists and businessmen visited Taiwan last year, while over 5 million Taiwanese traveled to mainland China, indicating the closeness of cross-strait interactions. In addition to the steady rise in the number of Mainland tourists visiting Taiwan, the government plans to allow mainland Chinese students to study in Taiwan, which hopefully will lay the foundation for long-lasting peace between the two sides.

January 6, 2011
MAC Deputy Minister Johnnason Liu and Vice Minister of Economic Affairs Francis Kuo-Hsin Liang jointly announce at a press conference the formal establishment of the Cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Committee (CSECC).

January 6, 2011
Regarding the formation of the Cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Committee (CSECC) , the SEF and the ARATS decide, after negotiations and exchange of documents, to appoint SEF Vice Chairman and Secretary-General Kao Koong-lian and ARATS Vice Chairman Zheng Lizhong as the joint convenors of the Committee for the two sides. Moreover, according to Article 11 of the Cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA), each side will respectively designate its representatives on the Committee.

January 6, 2011
Taiwan Affairs Office Spokesperson Fan Liqing states at a press conference that the Cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Committee (CSECC) is an organization for implementation of and negotiations on the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) and its related content, with the responsibility to handle affairs related to the framework agreement. She also emphasizes that the Agreement covers the main economic activities between the two sides and is closely related to the immediate interests of compatriots on both sides of the Strait. The Committee will be formed of personnel designated by the two sides, and it is an important development in promoting the institutionalization of cross-strait economic relations. According to the functional capacities granted by Article 11 of the ECFA, the Committee will address issues related to the development of cross-strait economic relations in accordance with the approaches of handling easy issues first and difficult issues later and moving forward in a gradual, orderly manner, as to promote negotiations on ECFA follow-up issues.

January 7, 2011
The MAC issues a press release indicating that, according to its latest public opinion survey, public support for institutionalized cross-strait negotiations remains high,72 percent of the public support the handling of cross-strait exchange issues through institutionalized negotiations, while nearly 62 percent of the public believe that the Cross-Strait Agreement on Medical and Health Cooperation signed at the Sixth Chiang-Chen Talks is conducive to promoting the development of the medical and biotech industries on both sides. Moreover, 75 percent of the public support the government's continuing negotiations with the other side on cross-strait investment protections that are to safeguard the investment rights and personal safety of Taiwanese investors in the Mainland.

January 7, 2011
During a meeting with Vice Governor of Shaanxi Province Jing Junhai, Taiwan Affairs Office Director Wang Yi expresses hope that Shaanxi Province can continue to develop its unique advantages in areas such as history, culture, technology, education, and energy resources to further strengthen exchanges and cooperation with Taiwan, raising Taiwan-related work to a new level this year. He also expresses support for Shaanxi and relevant parties in Taiwan to jointly hold a joint Yellow Emperor Ceremony for the QingMing Festival, continue to co-host the Cross-Strait Economic, Trade, and Technology Cooperation Conference (Shaanxi), as well as study and support the holding of major cross-strait exchanges and cooperation activities in Shaanxi, further developing the importance of Shaanxi in deepening cross-strait exchanges and cooperation and advancing the western development strategy.

January 11, 2011
During a press conference at the Office of the President, Spokesperson Luo Chih-chiang states that the "1992 Consensus" is under the framework of the ROC Constitution and rooted in the principle of no unification, no independence, and no use of force. Taiwan's position remains that the "1992 Consensus" is "one China with respective interpretations."

January 12, 2011
The Taiwan Affairs Office states at a routine press conference that opposition to "Taiwan independence" and adherence to the "1992 Consensus" form an important premise and foundation for establishing political mutual trust between the two sides, without which the improvement and development of cross-strait relations would be out of the question. It is hoped that the two sides can establish a new cross-strait industrial cooperation model of planned guidance, policy support, and joint participation by the manufacturing, academic, research, and business sectors. To this end, the two sides have decided to promote industrial cooperation in three trial areas of LED lighting, wireless cities, and city logistics of food. The Office also stresses the hope that the Taiwan side can abolish discriminatory provisions imposed on Mainland students, earnestly and practically ensure the legitimate rights and interests of Mainland students to study in Taiwan, and provide a better environment and better conditions for them to study and live in Taiwan. It also hopes that the two sides can actively create favorable conditions for the negotiation and signing of cross-strait cultural exchange agreements.

January 13, 2011
MAC Deputy Minister Johnnason Liu states that the government cannot engage in placement marketing, and of course it also prohibits mainland China from carrying out placement marketing in Taiwan.

January 13, 2011
At the fourth session of the 11th People's Congress of Fujian Province, Governor Huang Xiaojing states that, in 2011, Fujian will actively implement the Early Harvest Program on Trade in Goods, expanding exports of Fujian's advantageous products and increasing Taiwan imports. It will also encourage Taiwan businesses to establish sole proprietorship medical institutions in Fujian, promote the mutual establishment of operations and business cooperation between financial institutions in Fujian and Taiwan, establish a cross-strait regional financial service center in Xiamen and Fuzhou, and promote the expansion and addition of areas in the Taiwanese investment zone.

January 14, 2011
The MAC issues a press release stating that the "1992 Consensus" is the foundation on which institutionalized cross-strait negotiations could be established and operated with stability. It has enabled major improvements in the development of cross-strait relations and is unanimously affirmed and supported in Taiwan and abroad. The MAC indicates that the operational mechanism and accumulated fruitful results achieved through institutionalized cross-strait negotiations lay an even more solid foundation for the development of cross-strait relations. The two sides should particularly cherish and jointly uphold these hard-won results.

January 14, 2011
During a "Mini Three Links" inspection visit to Matsu, MAC Minister Lai Shin-yuan states that the highest guiding principle of the government in promoting cross-strait relations is to adhere to the principle of "putting Taiwan first for the benefit of the people." The government takes a steady and measured approach, and, with good risk management as precondition, gradually proposes policy thinking and specific positions to ease cross-strait tension, promote mutual normalization, and institutionalize development to practically advance the public's well-being. The government's approach of "promoting and keeping watch" has won broad popular support. Furthermore, the MAC will coordinate with plans of the Ministry of Transportation and Communications to contribute to the early implementation of the policy that allows independent travel by Mainland tourists to Kinmen, Matsu, and Penghu, promote a cross-strait policy more in line with public opinion, and enable the benefits of institutionalized "Mini Three Links" to be shared by all the people.

January 15, 2011
A conflict occurs when a Mainland fishing boat was crossing into the waters of Little Kinmen to fish. The SEF sends a letter to the ARATS to request that the related agencies in the Mainland inform the involved fishermen and fishing boats that Taiwan's law enforcement agencies will tightly crack down on any illegal fishing in Taiwan's waters.

January 18, 2011
During an interview, Premier Wu Den-yih states that intensive discussions are now underway on allowing Mainland tourists to travel independently to Taiwan. Taiwan needs to increase the identification facilities, so its national security will not be affected. He also emphasizes that rules will be appropriately relaxed as long as they are unrelated to sensitive, national defense or information and communications security matters, in the hopes of broadening areas open to Mainland investment.

January 18, 2011
During a Lunar New Year press conference, MAC Minister Lai Shin-yuan states that in facing mainland China, the government adheres to the policy guideline of "putting Taiwan first for the benefit of the people." As it promotes the signing of agreements and works for the benefits of the people, the government also firmly upholds Taiwan's identity. Moreover, in promoting new negotiations issues, it is also dedicated to establishing a mechanism to review the agreement results and realize the fruits of institutionalized cross-strait negotiations.

January 18, 2011
In a speech at the Ninth Symposium on Cross-Strait Relations, Taiwan Affairs Office Director Wang Yi states that deepening cross-strait cultural exchanges and cooperation requires work by compatriots on both sides of the Strait in the following areas: jointly passing on the fine traditions of Chinese culture, jointly shaping the image of Chinese culture of the times, jointly establishing the ethnic and cultural identity of compatriots on both sides of the Strait, and jointly promoting cross-strait cultural exchanges and cooperation.

January 19, 2011
In an article entitled "Consolidating Foundations, Staying the Course, and Enriching Significance" published in the first 2011 issue of Relations Across the Taiwan Straits magazine, Taiwan Affairs Office Director Wang Yi indicates that, in 2011, the two sides should: 1. Consolidate a political foundation. The most important aspect of this foundation is to jointly oppose "Taiwan independence" as well as acknowledge and adhere to the "1992 Consensus"; 2. Maintain the correct course. At present, it means to continue to promote the peaceful development of cross-strait relations. To this end, the two sides should continue to accumulate mutual trust, eliminate interference, promote benign interactions, and advance face-to-face; and 3. Enrich development significance, including in all areas of cross-strait exchanges and cooperation. The Mainland side hopes to work with Taiwan to implement the follow-up agendas to the Cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA), develop mechanisms for cross-strait cultural and education exchanges and cooperation, and further expand mutual contacts between the people on both sides in various sectors.

January 20, 2011
Regarding the meeting and the joint statement issued by U.S. President Obama and mainland Chinese President Hu Jintao, the MAC indicates that the government appreciates President Obama's words reaffirming the Taiwan Relations Act and supporting the development of cross-strait relations. The government believes that this represents an upgrading of the U.S. pledge and shared values for Taiwan's security, conveying great significance. Taiwan insists on maintaining self-defense capability and will continue to promote the sound development of cross-strait relations under the premise that its security is not threatened. Taiwan welcomes the United States' continuation of this policy position and its sustained provision of the security guarantee needed by Taiwan.

January 22, 2011
At the 2011 World Freedom Day Celebration and the annual General Conference of the World League for Freedom and Democracy(WLFD) and the Asian Pacific League for Freedom and Democracy(APLFD), President Ma Ying-jeou remarks that, over the past more than two years and under the thinking of "ending conflict by means of reconciliation, and replacing confrontation with negotiation", the two sides of the Taiwan Strait have entered into a new era of peaceful development, contributing greatly to regional security and stability. Both during the talks and in their joint statement, the leaders of the United States and mainland China have expressed support for cross-strait interactions and contacts. Taiwan hopes to continue to interact and maintain dialogues with the Mainland, using its wisdom to settle disputes and ensure peace in East Asia.

January 25, 2011
During a meeting with American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) Chairman Raymond F. Burghardt, President Ma Ying-jeou remarks that the increased cross-strait interactions in the economic sphere and other areas brought on by the signing of the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) are in the interests of both the region and the United States. With regard to the increasing cross-strait military imbalance, President Ma expresses his hope that the United States will approve as soon as possible the sale of F-16 C/D series fighter jets and diesel-electric submarines to Taiwan. He stresses that the military imbalance in the Taiwan Strait is not a positive factor for either cross-strait relations or regional security. Taiwan is not looking to expand its arsenal, but rather to replace aging equipments, and the new arms will definitely be used for defensive purposes.

January 25, 2011
When presiding at the 2011 Lunar New Year Party of the Ministry of National Defense, President Ma Ying-jeou states that, since coming into office, he has dedicated efforts to improving cross-strait relations and promoting peace in the Taiwan Strait to institutionalize cross-strait economic and trade relations, while also ensuring stability in the East Asia area. He also stresses the hopes that war will never again break out among the Chinese people, and that through deeper exchanges and with guidance by the wisdom of Chinese culture, the two sides can identify specific thinking to resolve disputes.

January 26, 2011
The Taiwan Affairs Office states at a routine press conference that, in the current phase, it continues to promote the peaceful development of cross-strait relations under the thinking of handling easy issues first and difficult issues later, dealing with economic issues first and political issues later, and moving forward in a gradual, orderly manner. It is hoped that the KMT-CPC platform can continue to fully serve its important and unique role in promoting the peaceful development of cross-strait relations. The two sides are now promoting cross-strait economic cooperation and work related to follow-up negotiations to the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA). They are also continuing to smoothly implement the Early Harvest Plan and strengthen cross-strait exchanges. This will be the major direction of work in 2011.

January 28, 2011
When attending a tea party for the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the MAC, President Ma Ying-jeou states that both sides of the Taiwan Strait acknowledge that there is only one China, but with different definitions. After his election as president in 2008, President Ma proposed to the other side the thinking of facing up to practical realities and jointly creating a win-win outcome. At the same time, mainland China was also prepared to re-acknowledge the "1992 Consensus." Therefore on June 11 that year, the two sides held the First Chiang-Chen Talks, resuming cross-strait negotiations after a 10-year break and ushering cross-strait relations into a new era. He also emphasizes that, within the framework of the ROC Constitution, the government maintains the cross-strait status quo of "no unification, no independence, and no use of force." Moreover, under the "1992 Consensus of one China with respective interpretations," the government upholds the principles of "putting Taiwan first for the benefit of the people" and "reciprocity, mutual benefit, and dignity" in developing exchanges and interactions with mainland China.

January 28, 2011
While attending a tea party for the 20th anniversary of the MAC’s establishment, Premier Wu Den-yih states that over the past two years, the MAC has thoroughly implemented the basic guiding principles on cross-strait policies announced by President Ma since his coming into office, including the two major foundations of "putting Taiwan first for the benefit of the people" and "no unification, no independence, and no use of force." These two solid foundations have enabled cross-strait policies to make steady progress for long-lasting achievements and shifted cross-strait relations from conflict and opposition to peace, stability, and development. The 15 agreements signed between the SEF and the ARATS through institutional negotiations, from the Cross-Strait Agreement on Joint Crime-Fighting and Judicial Mutual Assistance to the Cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) which has a broad and major impact on the future of Taiwan's economy, and to the opening of direct cross-strait transportation links and visits to Taiwan by Mainland tourists. All these agreements have had brought enormous win-win benefits for both sides.

January 30, 2011
At the 2011 Working Conference on Taiwan Affairs, Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference Jia Qinglin emphasizes that local agencies must thoroughly carry out this year's Taiwan-related work according to the demands of the central government, as well as constantly consolidate and strengthen the political, economic, cultural, and public opinion foundation for the development of cross-strait relations. He also states that mainland China will continue to promote all work following the basic line of thinking of handling easy issues first and difficult issues later, dealing with economic issues first and political issues later, and moving forward in a gradual, orderly manner. The two sides should promote cross-strait mutual trust and maintain benign interactions on the political foundation of opposing “Taiwan independence” and adhering firmly to the "1992 Consensus."

January 31, 2011
In a Lunar New Year message to Taiwan compatriots, Taiwan Affairs Office Director Wang Yi states that mainland China will make the utmost effort on all affairs beneficial to Taiwan compatriots. It will continue to maintain a people-oriented goal of benefiting the public, expand cross-strait exchanges and contacts, deepen mutually beneficial cross-strait cooperation, and thoroughly implement and realize the Cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA).

February 8, 2011
While attending the 2011 Lunar New Year gathering and tea party for Taiwanese businessmen in the Mainland, President Ma Ying-jeou states that, over the past two-plus years, the two sides have signed 15 agreements covering a comprehensive range of areas. These agreements have further institutionalized cross-strait relations and prevented Taiwan from being marginalized in Asia-Pacific economic integration, thereby greatly enhancing the level of Taiwan's internationalization. In the future, Taiwan and mainland China will promptly sign related agreements on investment protection and dispute resolution. At the same time, the government will continue to develop markets in other countries and areas in order to achieve the goal of "strengthening Taiwan, connecting with the Asian Pacific region, and adopting a global outlook."

February 8, 2011
While attending a Lunar New Year gathering of Taiwanese businessmen, MAC Minister Lai Shin-yuan states that the MAC will continue to promote institutionalized negotiations, deepen cross-strait exchanges, and work for the benefits of the people, while firmly protecting Taiwan's identity, upholding President Ma's policy guideline of "putting Taiwan first for the benefit of the people" and "both promoting and keeping check," as well as the principles of handling "easy issues first and difficult issues later," "urgent issues first and less pressing issues later," and "economic issues first and political issues later," and sequentially and steadily promoting cross-strait relations and Mainland policy.

February 9, 2011
The Ministry of Education officially approves quotas for Taiwan universities' enrollment of students from the Mainland Area. The 67 schools in the general university system, including National Taiwan University, and the 65 technological and vocational universities, including National Taiwan University of Science and Technology, can enroll up to 2,000 Mainland students for formal degrees. Universities approved to enroll Mainland students should provide student assistance mechanisms according to enrollment plans and prudently organize related measures and guidance for Mainland students. They should also pay attention to the proportionality principle and social perception in order to uphold the rights and interests of local students.

February 9, 2011
Regarding the Philippine's extradition to mainland China of 14 Taiwan nationals suspected of telecommunication fraud, SEF Vice Secretary-General Ma Shao-chang states, on the day of the extradition (February 2), the SEF sent a letter to the ARATS demanding that the 14 suspects be promptly repatriated to Taiwan according to the Cross-Strait Joint Crime-Fighting and Judicial Mutual Assistance Agreement. On February 4, the SEF again made four additional demands of the ARATS: to reaffirm the Mainland's respect for Taiwan's jurisdiction in this incident; to inform the location where the suspects are detained; to inform the method for family visits; and to guarantee the litigation rights and interests of the suspects, including their right to defense. On February 5, the ARATS replied that the said four demands had been forwarded to the related competent authorities. It also informed that the suspects were detained in Beijing and that the judiciary would ensure their (the suspects') basic rights and interests according to judicial procedures.

February 10, 2011
The MAC issues a press release regarding the Philippine's sending 14 Taiwanese fraud suspects to mainland China. It notes that Taiwan has issued a formal request for the repatriation of those suspects to Taiwan according to the Cross-Strait Joint Crime-Fighting and Judicial Mutual Assistance Agreement mechanism and will strictly punish the criminals to ensure the rights and interests of the people on both sides. Taiwan hopes that the Mainland side will, on the basis of deepening current cross-strait agreements, advancing benign cross-strait interactions, and ensuring the rights and interests of the people on both sides, face up to Taiwan's request and promptly return the suspects to Taiwan to stand trial.

February 10, 2011
While attending a Lunar New Year reception held by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for members of the foreign diplomatic corps stationed in the Republic of China (ROC), President Ma Ying-jeou states that since he took office, the government, under the framework of the ROC Constitution, has embraced the policy of "no unification, no independence, and no use of force" and adopted the "1992 Consensus - one China, respective interpretations" as the foundation to promote the peaceful development of cross-strait relations. Consequently, maintaining the status quo in the Taiwan Strait, putting trade and economic relations on a more institutionalzed footing, and signing the Cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) last year have all helped promote closer and more orderly cross-strait relations. At the same time, the ROC has seen substantial progress in its relationships with the international community. Besides maintaining stable and solid alliances with its 23 diplomatic allies, Taiwan has re-established mutual trust at high levels and improved bilateral relations with countries of no formal diplomatic ties, including the United States, Japan, Southeast Asian nations, New Zealand, Australia, and the European Union.

February 14, 2011
Fujian announces the "Fujian Province Medium- and Long-term Education Reform and Development Planning Guidelines (2010-2020)." The guidelines state that the new campus of the Fuzhou District University and Fuzhou (Pingtan) Comprehensive Experimental Zone would establish a cross-strait education cooperation pilot park to attract cooperation cases between upper-tier institutions of higher learning on the two sides of the Strait, as well as jointly establish scientific research centers and centers for commercializing (incubating) scientific and technological achievements.

February 15, 2011
Xu Mang, director of the Department of Economy, Taiwan Affairs Office, states in an interview that, in the new year, the Mainland side will actively realize the Cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA), as well as carry out talks with Taiwan on each follow-up agreement and seek to sign such agreements. It will also work hard to continue deepening and developing cross-strait economic exchanges and cooperation.

February 17, 2011
During an interview with the US-based Washington Post, President Ma Ying-jeou states that Taiwan's position in the East Asian economic landscape has improved remarkably since the signing of the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA), which presents more opportunities to Taiwan. In addition to trading with mainland China, Taiwan can conduct trade and negotiate similar economic cooperation agreements with other countries, which is extremely important for Taiwan.

February 21, 2011
In response to calls made by the public in mainland China through the Internet to stage a "Jasmine Movement" series of activities which attracted extensive attention worldwide, President Ma Ying-jeou issues a press release stating that democracy and human rights are universal values as well as an extension of people-oriented thoughts and benevolent government that are deeply-rooted in the Chinese culture. These are also the core values of Taiwanese and an important indicator in measuring cross-strait relations. President Ma also expresses his hope for the Mainland authorities to speed up their pace in implementing political reforms that would usher in democracy and rule of law, as well as protect human rights. In this new age of global democratization, new ways of thinking, open-mindedness, and tolerance need to be embraced in kindly handling dissidents. Thus democracy and human rights should be made incessantly the common language between the people of the two sides of the Taiwan Strait, helping create a free and democratic future for the Chinese race.

February 21, 2011
Responding to calls made by the public in mainland China through the Internet to stage a "Jasmine Movement" series of activities, the MAC states that in recent years, the rise of mainland China's overall national strength has improved the people's lives in many ways compared to the past. It hopes that as the Mainland develops economically, it can also accelerate the pace of realizing political reforms that would usher in a fair and just society as well as protect human rights, so that the Mainland people can not only enjoy a better economic life, but also a more pluralistic, democratic, and open social space. This will reduce differences between the core values of the two sides and will be highly beneficial to the stable development of cross-strait relations and long-term peace.

February 22, 2011
In a policy report to the Legislative Yuan, Premier Wu Den-yih states that the Cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Committee (CSECC) was established under the SEF-ARATS framework to handle affairs related to negotiations on follow-up issues to the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA). The Committee serves as a task-oriented and functional platform for operational negotiations, not a permanent agency or organization. The SEF and the ARATS must still confirm or negotiate and sign agreements on any consensus reached by the Committee, so there should not be any concerns of blank authorization.

February 22, 2011
The SEF and the ARATS hold the first regular meeting of the Cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Committee (CSECC) under the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA). The two sides reach several points of consensus, including the establishment of six working groups to carry out ECFA follow-up work on trade in goods, trade in services, investment, dispute resolution, industrial cooperation, and customs cooperation. They also agree to begin negotiations on three follow-up agreements covering trade in goods, trade in services, and dispute resolution.

February 23, 2011
The MAC issues a press release emphasizing that the government is firm in its position on national sovereignty, namely that the Republic of China is a sovereign and independent country. President Ma Ying-jeou has repeatedly emphasized that "one China" is the Republic of China, and there is no second explanation. The government has consistently advocated that, under the framework of the ROC Constitution, it will maintain the cross-strait status quo of "no unification, no independence, and no use of force,”which is the highest common factor in the Taiwan society. At this stage, the development of cross-strait relations should be established on the foundation of "shelving controversies and facing up to practical realities", and the two sides should jointly promote cross-strait stability and peace base on the mutual trust built up through institutionalized cross-strait negotiations and exchanges. These hard-won results should be upheld with efforts.

February 23, 2011
ARATS Chairman Chen Yunlin leads the "2011 ARATS Economic and Trade Mission" to visit Taiwan from February 23 to 28. The mission is joined by over 20 ARATS directors or entrepreneurs from Mainland enterprises represented on the ARATS board of directors.

February 23, 2011
The Taiwan Affairs Office states during a regular press conference that the Cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Committee (CSECC) has established a new platform for institutionalized negotiations in cross-strait economic and trade fields. It hopes that the representatives of the two sides can appropriately handle issues emerging in the course of cross-strait economic development, as well as new problems resulting from the implementation of the Agreement in accordance with the thinking of easy issues first and difficult issues later and moving forward in a gradual and orderly manner. Regarding specific plans for SEF-ARATS talks this year, the SEF and the ARATS can discuss and finalize this according to their actual needs and the progress in negotiations on concrete issues. As for the issue involving 14 Taiwan suspects of fraud, the Taiwan Affairs Office expresses hope that the two sides can discuss follow-up handling of related affairs through suitable channels in a way beneficial to upholding the peaceful development of cross-strait relations, maintaining the order of cross-strait exchanges and contacts, protecting the interests of compatriots, deepening cross-strait cooperation on fighting crime, and enhancing judicial mutual assistance. It also states that this year, it will further promote the normalization and institutionalization of cross-strait cultural and educational exchanges.

March 1, 2011
At the Second Cross-Strait Forum, Taiwan Affairs Office Director Wang Yi expresses hope that the various sectors on both sides can create more exchange platforms which are consistent with their respective characteristics and which embody local advantages, thereby forming a comprehensive, multi-level, and mechanism-based cross-strait exchange structure to provide stable and reliable institutional guarantees for private exchanges between the two sides. He also hopes that, in the future, further efforts can be made in the following directions regarding cross-strait exchanges: 1) mutual exchanges should be broader and span regions, sectors, party lines, and ideologies; 2) exchanges should be more in-depth, both seeking common ground and assimilating differences; and 3) exchanges should be more enduring.

March 8, 2011
During an interview with the United Kingdom's Financial Times, President Ma Ying-jeou states that the development of cross-strait relations should put "economic matters before political ones, urgent matters before less pressing ones, and easy issues before difficult ones" while moving forward in a gradual, orderly manner. There is no urgent need to deal with political issues at this time. The government's position is, under the Constitution of the Republic of China, to maintain the status quo in the Taiwan Strait— namely "no unification, no independence, and no use of force," and on the basis of the "1992 Consensus of one China, respective interpretations," to promote the peaceful development of cross-strait relations. This is also a very clear position of Taiwan on cross-strait political issues.

March 8, 2011
While attending the "Straits Exchange Foundation: 20 Years of Creating a Cross-Strait Win-Win Outcome" Symposium on Cross-Strait Relations, Vice President Vincent Siew states that since May 2008, the two sides have "shelved controversies and sought common ground" on the basis of the "1992 Consensus," resuming operation of the SEF-ARATS negotiation mechanism. Over the past two and a half years, the two sides have promoted cross-strait negotiations based on putting "economics first, politics later" and on the principle of dealing with "easy issues first and difficult issues later." In the future, the two sides will face even more complex and difficult issues requiring even greater wisdom from the two sides to resolve.

March 8, 2011
During the "Straits Exchange Foundation: 20 Years of Creating a Cross-Strait Win-Win Outcome" Symposium on Cross-Strait Relations, MAC Minister Lai Shin-yuan states in a speech that freedom, democracy, human rights, and the rule of law are the basic premises of Taiwan in approaching cross-strait relations. The government insists that the development of cross-strait relations and cross-strait exchanges will absolutely not and cannot harm the Taiwan people's way of life. In the process of improving cross-strait relations, the government adheres to the position that the Republic of China is a sovereign and independent country, orientating and developing cross-strait relations under the framework of the ROC Constitution. President Ma has repeatedly stressed that, under the framework of the ROC Constitution, the nation's future and prospects will be decided by the 23 million people of Taiwan. The President's firm defense of Taiwan's core values accords with the expectations of the vast majority of the public.

March 8, 2011
During the Taiwan Delegation Plenary Meeting at the Fourth Session of the Eleventh National People's Congress, Taiwan Affairs Office Director Wang Yi states that, for the first time, the Mainland's Five-Year Plan includes a chapter dedicated to elaborating on cross-strait relations. It not only clearly indicates the development course of cross-strait economic relations over the next few years, but also explicitly states the focal areas and main content of deepening cross-strait economic cooperation, providing guiding principles for cross-strait economic and trade cooperation promotion. The current focal work areas are: 1) to comprehensively promote various follow-up talks to the Cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA); 2) to vigorously develop extensive cross-strait exchanges in various fields and on various levels; and 3) to take practical measures to enable more compatriots on both sides of the Strait, especially the grassroots public in Taiwan, to benefit more from the fruits of the peaceful development of cross-strait relations.

March 9, 2011
While attending the 20th anniversary celebration of the SEF’s establishment, President Ma Ying-jeou states that the government must consider with priority three issues in the process of promoting cross-strait relations. The first is "the people": government policies must accord with the principle of "putting Taiwan first for the benefit of the people." The second is "peace": without peace there is nothing. While pursuing peace, the government will absolutely not sacrifice national sovereignty and dignity. The third is "democracy": cross-strait policy should still accord with the principle of "national need, public support, and legislative oversight."

March 9, 2011
The ARATS sends a telegram to congratulate the SEF on its 20th anniversary of the establishment.

March 11, 2011
The SEF sends a letter to the ARATS expressing sympathy over the earthquake disaster in Yingjiang, Yunnan.

March 16, 2011
Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council states at a regular press conference that, from 2011, institutes of higher education in the Mainland will expand the scope of Taiwan high school graduates qualified for exam-free enrollment from students with the top academic scores to students among the top percentile on the College Entrance Examination. Regarding the strengthening of cross-strait economic cooperation, the priority is to actively realize the implementation of the Cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA). The next is to comprehensively deepen cross-strait economic cooperation by expanding trade, encouraging investment, advancing cooperation in emerging industries, finance, and other modern service sectors, and strengthening intellectual property rights protection. The third is to promote the establishment of the Economic Zone on the West Coast of the Taiwan Strait. Exchange channels on nuclear safety between specialized institutions on the two sides have always been smooth. In the future, the content of issues negotiated between the SEF and the ARATS will progressively increase based on actual needs presented by cross-strait developments.

March 17, 2011
During a meeting with scholars and experts attending the symposium on "Mainland China’s Rise: the External and Internal Impacts," MAC Minister Lai Shin-yuan emphasizes that, along with the development of cross-strait relations, the universal values of freedom, democracy, human rights, and the rule of law not only have been a source of power and pride in promoting the growth and vigor of Taiwan, but they are also mutual objectives that Taiwan hopes to share and improve jointly with the other side of the Strait. Non-governmental organizations on both sides should expand exchanges and cooperation. The two sides should also show breadth of mind and mutual respect, dedicating efforts for the international community. This will bring major significance for the harmonious development of cross-strait relations. In international activities, the two sides should interact and treat each other in a fair and reasonable way. Minister Lai also calls on the Mainland side to take a proactive and pragmatic approach.

March 18, 2011
At the 32nd anniversary celebration for the Society for Strategic Studies, ROC, President Ma Ying-jeou states that, under the framework of the ROC Constitution, the government maintains the status quo of "no unification, no independence, and no use of force" across the Taiwan Strait. Moreover, on the foundation of the "1992 Consensus"— namely "one China, respective interpretations," Taiwan embraces the position of "putting an end to conflict via rapprochement and replacing confrontation with negotiation." The two sides have signed 15 agreements, including the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) and are now carrying out negotiations on the signing of agreements related to investment protection and dispute resolution. The President emphasizes that the facts demonstrate that the peaceful development of cross-strait relations can expand Taiwan's international space, and that cross-strait relations and international relations can coexist, forming a "virtuous cycle" and then creating a "triple win" outcome.

March 25, 2011
During a meeting with a KMT Youth Corps delegation, Taiwan Affairs Office Director Wang Yi emphasizes that consensus has been reached on some basic issues in cross-strait relations. This consensus includes three points: First, both the two sides oppose any form of Taiwan independence, meaning they oppose territory separation, uphold stability in the Taiwan Strait, and safeguard the overall fundamental interests of the Chinese people. Secondly, the two sides embody the 1992 Consensus of "One China." Although each side has a different interpretation of the meaning of "One China," they can seek common ground while keeping differences. This is the very essence of the 1992 Consensus. Third, the two sides have agreed to actively, pragmatically, and steadily carry out cross-strait negotiations and exchanges and expand mutually beneficial cooperation in various fields.

March 29, 2011
During a meeting with former US Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage and a delegation from the Project 2049 Institute, President Ma Ying-jeou states that the government's Mainland policy is to address "easy issues first and difficult issues later," "urgent matters before less pressing ones," and "economic issues before political ones." With this approach, the pace of cross-strait developments has been maintained "neither too fast nor too slow." He states that the ROC has no intention of engaging in an arms race with mainland China. Rather, the government only hopes to maintain peace in the Taiwan Strait. The President also indicates that Taiwan hopes to actively cooperate with mainland China to prevent possible nuclear accidents, so “nuclear safety” will become an important topic in future talks between the two sides.

March 29, 2011
During a meeting with former US Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage, MAC Minister Lai Shin-yuan states that the government upholds the Constitution of the Republic of China. Based on the real foundation of "mutual non-acknowledge of sovereignty and mutual non-denial of political authority," the government is encouraging the two sides to shelve disputes and jointly seek to develop peaceful, stable, and co-prosperous relations. This is a policy outcome of great significance. Moreover, freedom and democracy are Taiwan's biggest assets and core values. Last year, nearly 1.2 million Mainland tourists visited Taiwan. This high-frequency contacts and interactions between people on the two sides will help increase awareness among the Mainland people of Taiwan's pluralistic and open society, as well as have an impact on political and social development in the Mainland. She also emphasizes that, as Taiwan purses peaceful and stable development across the Taiwan Strait, it will extend its global reach, constantly upgrade its national power, and deeply cultivate its confidence in contacts with the Mainland. This is the best strategy at this stage to protect our national interests.

March 30, 2011
SEF spokesperson Ma Shao-chang states that the SEF has contacted the ARATS over talks on nuclear security cooperation. It hopes that the two sides can complete negotiations before the Seventh Chiang-Chen Talks and sign an agreement, and that the competent authorities of the two sides can accelerate preparations.

March 30, 2011
At a regular press conference, the Taiwan Affairs Office states that currently mainland China still adheres to the spirit of "building mutual trust, shelving controversies, seeking common ground, and jointly creating a win-win outcome" and gradually advances cross-strait negotiations and the development of cross-strait relations by addressing "economic issues first and political issues later, easy issues first and difficult issues later." The political issues are ultimately inevitable, and the two sides should confront these issues, gradually finding a solution and creating conditions. The Office also states that, exchange channels on nuclear safety between specialized institutions on the two sides are smooth, and both sides can propose communications and discussions if needed. On the basis of maintaining the steady progress of institutionalized cross-strait negotiations, the SEF and the ARATS can discuss and decide on this issue during the seventh talks according to actual needs and progresses in talks on concrete issues.

March 31, 2011
The MAC issues a press release indicating that the government has always taken an active attitude on allowing Mainland tourists to travel independently to Taiwan and has vigorously promoted this policy. Both allowing Mainland tourists to travel independently to Taiwan (including Kinmen, Matsu, and Penghu) and allowing them to travel independently to Kinmen, Matsu and Penghu via the "Mini Three Links" are established policy objectives that the government hopes to promptly promote. However, the implementation of independent travel via the "Mini Three Links" still requires coordination from the Mainland side. Through communications between the Taiwan Strait Tourism Association and the Cross-Strait Tourism Exchange Association, and on various occasions, the government has been expressing fully Taiwan's hope that the Mainland side can give priority and adopt a more flexible position on independent travel via the "Mini Three Links," and that the related government agencies will continue to work hard to promote this policy.

April 1, 2010
During a meeting with a delegation from the Junior Chamber International Taiwan, President Ma Ying-jeou states that mainland China is one of the biggest trade entity in the world. If the two sides across the atraits can sign the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA), it could attract foreign investment to Taiwan, as well as expand the market share for Taiwan products in mainland China. The government plans to spend NT$95 billion over a 10-year period for "stimulus guidance," "structural adjustment," "loss relief" and other strategies to help certain competitively weaker industries enhance their competitiveness or transformation, according to various likely impacts on the industry and the workforce.

April 1, 2010
During a meeting with a homecoming delegation from the Taiwanese Association of Japan, President Ma Ying-jeou indicates that, Taiwan is promoting "flexible diplomacy" in the hope of improving relations with mainland China and other countries so that it can have more space for movement and survival. Several concrete achievements have been made to date, including U.S. military sales to Taiwan,Taiwan's acession in the Government Procurement Agreement (GPA) as well as participation in the World Health Assembly.

April 1, 2010
During a meeting with the Taiwan delegation to the "2010 Boao Forum for Asia," President Ma Ying-jeou states that the cross-strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) will not allow Mainland workers into Taiwan, nor will it further open Taiwan to Mainland agricultural products. At the same time, Taiwan will push the Mainland to further extend tariff-free treatment to Taiwan agricultural and fishery products. President Ma also states that the ECFA aims, on the one hand, to institutionalize cross-strait economic and trade relations, and, on the other hand, to advance our efforts to sign free trade agreements with other countries.

April 1, 2010
At the Global View Economic Forum, MAC Minister Lai Shin-yuan indicates that the early harvest list will not further open up Taiwan to Mainland agricultural products. It also will not cover vulnerable traditional industries, nor will it open up Taiwan to Mainland workers. In line with the consensus between the two sides, major Taiwan exports to the Mainland will be included on the list for reduced tariff treatment. The government is confident that the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) can be signed at the Fifth Chiang-Chen Talks. This also is the government's goal.

April 3, 2010
During a seminar on the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) in Yunlin, President Ma Ying-jeou states that the signing of the ECFA is aimed at preventing Taiwan's market from marginalization and institutionalizing cross-strait relations. It also will promote the further internationalization of Taiwan and help Taiwan become an Asia-Pacific economic and trade hub. He also states that 272 free trade agreements (FTAs) have been signed around the world. Apart from the FTAs signed by Costa Rico, none of these agreements has ever been submitted for decision by referendum. The Act Governing Relations Between People of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area stipulates that all cross-strait agreements involving legal amendments must be submitted to the Legislative Yuan for deliberation.

April 3, 2010
The Ministry of Education issues a press release stating that it has made an overall plan for the recruitment of mainland Chinese students to study in Taiwan and the recognition of Mainland academic credentials. The plan will be implemented in a phased manner, with review and amendments and full accompanying measures, and according to the principles of the "three restrictions and six noes." The Ministry also is developing sound supporting measures. The matter of Mainland students coming to Taiwan for short-term study does not concern the issue of recognition of academic records. Domestic schools also cannot issue certificates of academic credits earned. Schools that invite Mainland students to study in Taiwan must strictly forbid these students from accepting part-time work or engaging in other activities against the permitted purpose.

April 4, 2010
In an interview with Yazhou Zhoukan in Tokyo on March 18, Taiwan Affairs Office Director Wang Yi states that the Mainland currently has no timetable for political negotiations. Regarding the resolution of political differences, it would be better to begin with discussions between scholars and experts from the two sides and slowly form consensus. On the foundation of adhering to the one China principle, any problems can be discussed. The Mainland side first intends to continue to deepen cross-strait economic cooperation, focusing on the prompt negotiation and signing of the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA). Next will be vigorous development of cultural and education exchanges. Third will see robust promotion of exchanges between the people on the two sides. Fourth will be to actively strengthen and perfect various policy measures. And fifth is to steadily deepen mutual political trust across the Strait through equal negotiations.

April 6, 2010
During a video conference with Harvard University's Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies, President Ma Ying-jeou states that Taiwan needs to institutionalize its economic and trade relations with mainland China and diversify its export market as well as products to avoid being cut off from the global economy and also to enhance its international competitiveness. Therefore, the government has been pushing hard for an Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) with the Mainland to provide a structural platform for economic interactions between the two sides of the Strait.

April 6, 2010
Officials from the MAC and the Ministry of Economic Affairs and other ministries present a report to the Legislative Yuan on the second round of Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) negotiations. MAC Minister Lai Shin-yuan states that during the negotiations, a consensus was reached with the Mainland side that the Agreement will not demand that Taiwan further open up to Mainland agricultural imports, will not discuss the issue of admitting Mainland workers, and will not affect Taiwan's vulnerable traditional industries. It was also agreed that Taiwan would not reduce the tariff rate on the 1,415 Mainland agricultural products currently admitted in Taiwan.

April 6, 2010
The MAC issues a press release emphasizing that the cross-strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) does not involve the issue of opening Taiwan to Mainland laborers or white collar workers. It also indicates that, currently, Mainland companies in 117 service sectors are allowed to set up branches or subsidiaries in Taiwan, and that enterprises with an investment amount or operation capital of over US$200,000 may apply for two to seven persons-in-charge or specialists to come to Taiwan to handle business activities. Mainland businesspeople coming to Taiwan for training or other related activities are not permitted to work and can only stay in Taiwan for one to three months without extensions.

April 6, 2010
During a meeting with a visiting mission of retired high-ranking generals of the Taiwan New Alliance, Taiwan Affairs Office Director Wang Yi states that in order to maintain the correct course and good momentum in the peaceful development of cross-strait relations, it is necessary to constantly deepen cross-strait mutual political trust, steadily advance a sense of ethnic identity among compatriots on both sides of the Strait, and continuously strengthen cross-strait exchanges and cooperation in various fields.

April 7, 2010
During a meeting with a visiting mission of retired high-ranking generals of the Taiwan New Alliance, Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) Chairman Jia Qinglin states that the PRC will continue to adhere to the spirit of building mutual trust, shelving controversies, seeking common ground while reserving differences, and jointly creating a win-win outcome. In line with the thinking of focusing on economic issues first and political issues later, easy issues first and difficult issues later, and moving forward in a gradual, orderly manner, the PRC will promote continued benign interactions and deepen mutual political trust across the Strait, work together with compatriots in various fields on both sides, consolidate and develop current comprehensive exchanges, overcome obstacles, eliminate interference, and promote the steady development of cross-strait relations.

April 8, 2010
The MAC issues a press release emphasizing that the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) is purely about cross-strait economic exchange and cooperation affairs and does not concern sovereignty or political issues. In signing the ECFA, there cannot be political preconditions, and the Agreement will not contain any political language. This is the position the government will consistently adhere to. In line with the spirit of the World Trade Organization (WTO), the government also will properly handle issues related to the ECFA, as well as seek more beneficial conditions for Taiwan. The rights and interests enjoyed by Taiwan under the WTO will not be diminished because of the signing of the ECFA.

April 8, 2010
At the China Xiamen Machinery and Electronics Exhibition (CXMEE), Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council Deputy Director Zheng Lizhong expresses hope that the two sides can treat each other with sincerity, move towards the same direction, accelerate negotiations, work to promptly sign the cross-strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA), and jointly promote the development of the Mainland and that of Taiwan. The two sides should adhere firmly to equal negotiations, work for mutual benefit and a win-win situation, and be attentive to the deep concerns of the other side. The utmost effort should be made to prevent the signing of the ECFA from affecting Taiwan's vulnerable industries and small and medium enterprises.

April 10, 2010
President Ma Ying-jeou leads a group of ministers of the Ministry of Economic Affairs, the MAC, the Council of Agriculture, and the Council of Labor Affairs to attend the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) Symposium. He states that the ECFA is rooted in the concept of a phased free trade agreement. Under the approach of a framework agreement, the negotiation period can be extended, giving Taiwan more time to respond. This is conducive to maintaining the status quo in the Taiwan Strait. It also fully conforms to Taiwan's mainstream public opinion. During negotiations, the government absolutely will demand reciprocity and dignity, and the content of the Agreement will not contain any political language. This is a purely economic and trade agreement. However, the Taiwan side also will pay attention to possible political effects, on the one hand maintaining Taiwan's identity, and on the other responding to future changes.

April 10, 2010
During a meeting with Fredrick Chien, top advisor to the Cross-Straits Common Market Foundation, PRC Vice President Xi Jinping states that advancing ethnic identity among compatriots on both sides of the Strait is a fundamental guarantee for the peaceful development of cross-strait relations and should become a theme in the development of cross-strait relations. The two sides should constantly enrich the content of cooperation, expand cooperation coverage, innovate cooperation modes, and establish complete cooperation mechanisms. The two sides also should take active measures to promote new types of industrial cooperation, broaden two-way investment, and strengthen exchanges and cooperation in financial service industry and other fields.

April 10, 2010
During a meeting with Fredrick Chien, top advisor to the Cross-Straits Common Market Foundation, at the Boao Forum for Asia, Taiwan Affairs Office Director Wang Yi states that the closer cross-strait economic cooperation is and the more institutionalized cross-strait economic contacts are, the more beneficial it will be to promote joint development of the cross-strait economy.

April 11, 2010
At the 2009-2010 Third Joint Annual Meeting of the Lions Club International Taiwan, Vice President Vincent Siew states that as the government promotes the signing of the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA), it also is strengthening efforts to sign economic cooperation agreements with the United States, Japan and other countries. It is especially working to sign free trade agreements with ASEAN countries. These are the focus of the government's active efforts, and also its strategy to promote ways for Taiwan to join the trend of regional economic integration and forge a better road to link with the world.

April 12, 2010
During a meeting with representatives from labor groups, President Ma Ying-jeou indicates that the goal of signing the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA)with mainland China is to integrate Taiwan with the Asia-Pacific economy. The main content is tariff reduction, investment protection, and intellectual property right protection. The Agreement will adhere to the principle of small and necessary and be entirely unrelated to labor issues. Its "framework agreement" approach will extend the time and reduce the impact upon implementation, while also increasing opportunities for adjustment. The Mainland side also has promised not to further open up Mainland agricultural exports to Taiwan and not to reduce tariffs on the 1,415 Mainland agricultural products currently admitted in Taiwan. Utmost efforts also will be made by the government to reduce the impact on Taiwan's vulnerable traditional industries.

April 14, 2010
The Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF) sends letters to the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits (ARATS) expressing deep concern and sympathy over the earthquake in the Qinghai area of mainland China.

April 14, 2010
The Taiwan Affairs Office (TAO) states at a press conference that this year, Mainland universities will not require admission testing for Taiwan high school graduates scoring at the top level on Taiwan's basic academic aptitude tests. The TAO also states that the two sides have agreed to accelerate progress in promoting the negotiation and signing of the cross-strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) and hold the third round of negotiations in the Mainland at the earliest possible date. During the second round of negotiations, the Mainland side did not ask the Taiwan side to further open up its markets to Mainland agricultural products. Agricultural products also will not be included in the early harvest plan.

April 15, 2010
The MAC issues a press release stating that after the major earthquake struck Yushu County in Qinghai, mainland China early in the morning on April 14, the Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF) immediately sent two letters to the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits (ARATS) expressing Taiwan's sincere concerns and sympathy. The letters also informed that related agencies of the Taiwan government have formed a search and rescue team that can be dispatched to provide emergency assistance. The Taiwan Red Cross also expressed willingness to send a team to help with the search and rescue effort.

April 15, 2010
The Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits (ARATS) sends a letter to the Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF) stating that the Mainland has sufficient rescue resources in the disaster-hit area of Qinghai and that it will immediately contact the SEF if there are any rescue needs.

April 17, 2010
At the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) Symposium, President Ma Ying-jeou states that a referendum is the right of the people. If the opposition parties intend to initiate a referendum, the government will not interfere so long as it is handled according to the law. However, around the world, free trade agreements and agreements similar to the ECFA are all first submitted to the nat=ional parliaments since legislative oversight is extremely important. After the ECFA is signed, it will not become effective until approved by the Legislative Yuan.

April 24, 2010
The Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits (ARATS) writes back to the Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF) thanking Taiwan for the donations and assistance for post-quake reconstruction in Yushu. The ARATS also informs that it will forward the funds to the reconstruction work in the disaster area.

April 25, 2010
At the start of a debate on the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) with Democratic Progressive Party Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen, President Ma Ying-jeou states that if the ECFA negotiations cannot benefit Taiwan's overall economy, then he will have no hesitation in abandoning it. President Ma also announces that the government's FTA committee will be upgraded and led by him personally to accelerate the promotion of FTA signing between the Republic of China and its major trade partners. He also calls on the Mainland authorities to not obstruct this effort.

April 27, 2010
During a radio interview, MAC Minister Lai Shin-yuan states that the cross-strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) is a small but necessary agreement instead of a large and comprehensive free trade agreement (FTA). The World Trade Organization (WTO) does not require members to fully open their markets to each other within 10 years of signing an FTA. Actual cases show that some countries have not opened up by even 50% within this period of time.
Regardless of what approach the ECFA follows in the future, Taiwan will never fully open to Mainland imports. This is a major principle of the government in negotiations.

April 27, 2010
The Taiwan Affairs Office (TAO) states at a press conference that it supports the holding of negotiations on the establishment of a cross-strait currency settlement mechanism. In the current phase, priority should be placed on issues related to the handling of cash currency exchange, supply and remittance operations. The TAO also expresses hope that related parties in Taiwan can formulate policies and measures beneficial to the development of cross-strait education exchanges and cooperation, so that further progress can be achieved in this field.

April 28, 2010
At the opening ceremony for the 2010 Cross-Strait Entrepreneurs Purple Mountain Summit, Taiwan Affairs Office Director Wang Yi states that opposing "Taiwan independence" and adhering to the "1992 Consensus" form an important political foundation for improving and developing cross-strait relations, as well as provide sustainable and reliable political protection for cross-strait economic cooperation.

April 30, 2010
The Ministry of Education issues a press release stating that the "Measures Governing Study and Residence in Taiwan by Students from the Mainland Area (Draft)" clearly stipulates specific limits on period of study for each stage of study by Mainland students in Taiwan. After graduation, all Mainland students even those with admission qualifications for the next stage still need to leave first and re-enter Taiwan to continue their studies. Mainland students who have graduated or whose reasons for enrollment are eliminated are required under the rules to return to the Mainland. They cannot remain in Taiwan, therefore they will not be able to stay in Taiwan for employment. Students that subsequently have other reasons to visit Taiwan for work must submit an application according to the stipulations of the current Employment Services Act, Act Governing Relations Between People of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area, and other related regulations.

April 30, 2010
During an interview with the U.S. Cable News Network (CNN), President Ma Ying-jeou states that he has no immediate plans to meet with the mainland Chinese leader. What is most important for the two sides is to begin the cooperation with economic agreements, cultural exchanges, and education exchanges so as to lay a solid foundation for closer cross-strait relations. The time is not yet ripe for the leaders of the two sides to meet. In addition, Taiwan still needs defensive weapons to safeguard its democracy. In fact, this is consistent not only with Taiwan's interests but also with the interests of the United States. Taiwan will continue to reduce risks and purchase military equipment from the U.S. However, Taiwan will not ask the U.S. to fight for Taiwan. This position is extremely clear.

May 1, 2011
The Fujian Provincial Department of Education states that it will accelerate development of an experimental park for cross-strait education cooperation. The park will create a base for cross-strait vocational education resources and the training of vocational education instructors. It will also be used to explore new approaches to promoting mutual recruitment of students, mutual recognition of academic records and credits, and mutual employment of teachers between institutions of higher education in Fujian and Taiwan, providing new models and new experience for cross-strait exchanges and cooperation on higher education.

May 3, 2011
While attending the opening ceremony for the Ministry of Economic Affairs' Joint Service Center for Overseas Taiwanese Businesses, President Ma Ying-jeou states that in recent years there has been a steady wave of global economic integration which has advanced especially fast in the Asia-Pacific region. The government will decide whether or not to sign free trade agreements or other types of economic cooperation pacts with other countries based on economic complementarity, and it will also actively protect the rights and interests of Taiwan businesses, as well as make efforts to improve the insufficiencies and overly expensive fares of cross-strait flights and other problems.

May 3, 2011
During a meeting with members of the Seventh Cross-Strait Economic, Trade, and Cultural Forum delegation, President Ma Ying-jeou states that though there are still many differences between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait and there is room for improvement especially in regards to international affairs, the past three years have shown that the improvement of cross-strait relations can expand Taiwan's international participation and strengthen the willingness and confidence of the people of Taiwan to deepen cross-strait relations in order to create a win-win outcome.

May 3, 2011
During a media interview, MAC Minister Lai Shin-yuan indicates that the people make their own decisions under the framework of the ROC Constitution and with accordance to the procedures of constitutional government. This is not ultimate unification, nor is it Taiwan independence; rather, it is a firmly rooted constitutional position. The great majority of the people of Taiwan rely on the fact of protecting the Republic of China as a sovereign and independent country on as the ROC promotes cross-strait relations. The prospects and future of Taiwan are in the hands of its 23 million people, and the people will decide for themselves based on the constitutional framework of the Republic of China.

May 4, 2011
During at interview with Japan's Asahi Shimbun, President Ma Ying-jeou states that the government's Mainland policy is to maintain the status quo of "no unification, no independence, and no use of force”in the Taiwan Strait under the framework of the ROC Constitution. Under its constitutional framework, the ROC will also promote cross-strait relations according to the consensus reached between the two sides in 1992, known as the "1992 Consensus." Furthermore, the two sides are carrying out exchanges and promoting cross-strait relations with reciprocity, dignity, and mutual benefit in the hope of "putting Taiwan first for the benefit of the people."

May 5, 2011
At a regular press conference, MAC Deputy Minister Johnnason Liu states that the institutionalized negotiations that the two sides are now carrying out are a "general" platform which can be applied to various models. Moreover, officials are sitting at the table for negotiations or talks on operational issues. It is a "mechanism to mechanism" approach subject to legislative oversight, making it stable, practical, and transparent. On the other hand, the "Macao Model" limits participation to private organizations and handles negotiations as "one organization per issue" on a case-by-case basis, with no officials of competent agencies participating. More importantly, there is no legislative oversight and the process is consequently not transparent.

May 7, 2011
At the opening ceremony of the Seventh Cross-Strait Economic, Trade, and Cultural Forum, member of the Politburo Standing Committee of the Communist Party of China Jia Qinglin states in a speech that, on the joint political foundation of opposing "Taiwan independence" and adhering to the "1992 Consensus," the two sides are strengthening mutual trust and maintaining an environment necessary for cross-strait exchanges, cooperation, consultations, and negotiations. He also presents four suggestions: the first is to promote the mechanism-based progress of cross-strait economic cooperation with implementing the Cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) as the main line; the second is to upgrade the level of cross-strait economic cooperation by transforming economic development methods; the third is to heighten cross-strait economic cooperation rooted in advancing the welfare of the people on both sides of the Strait; and the fourth is to maintain the environment for cross-strait economic cooperation with a focus on ensuring the overall peaceful development of cross-strait relations.

May 8, 2011
At the closing ceremony of the Seventh Cross-Strait Economic, Trade, and Cultural Forum, Taiwan Affairs Office Director Wang Yi states that the Mainland has started to implement the Twelfth Five-Year Plan, and the "Golden Decade" development blueprint on the Taiwan side is also taking shape. Both sides regard the promotion of cross-strait economic cooperation as an important matter to realize joint development and co-prosperity across the Taiwan Strait. He also calls on the two sides to earnestly take practical actions and work for the well-being of compatriots on both sides of the Strait, so as to promote the peaceful development of cross-strait relations to benefit more sectors on both sides, especially the grassroots public. Moreover, the two sides should place emphasis on strengthening cross-strait youth exchanges, more vigorously advancing cross-strait cultural and educational exchanges and cooperation and constantly strengthening the shared identity of the Chinese people.

May 10, 2011
President Ma Ying-jeou states at a press conference that the requirement of the World Health Organization (WHO) that all its affiliated institutions refer to the Republic of China as "Taiwan, Province of China" in internal documents dwarfs Taiwan's national dignity, and Taiwan absolutely rejects this unfair, unreasonable, and duplicitous treatment. The government has demanded that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs lodge a stern protest with the WHO. President Ma also protests strongly to the Mainland authorities, stating that using this approach to hurt Taiwanese people’s feeling is unacceptable and highly detrimental to the future development of the two sides.  

May 10, 2011
During a meeting with the president and officials of the 17th World Taiwanese Chambers of Commerce, President Ma Ying-jeou states that the World Health Organization's duplicitous use of "Taiwan, Province of China" for Taiwan on confidential internal documents and "Chinese Taipei" in public is extremely inappropriate. Taiwan has protested to mainland China. The government will always protect the sovereignty of the Republic of China, ensure Taiwan's security, and uphold the people's dignity.

May 10, 2011
During a meeting with Kuomintang honorable Chairman Wu Poh-hsiung, CPC General Secretary Hu Jintao states that the two sides must adhere to the "1992 Consensus" which embodies the one China principle and continue to resolutely oppose separatist activities aimed at "Taiwan independence." On a common political foundation, the two sides should build mutual trust, and then seek common ground and begin benign interactions. At the same time, the two sides should vigorously promote cross-strait cultural and educational exchanges, emphasize and strengthen cross-strait youth exchanges, reinforce Chinese culture and Chinese identity, and continue to ensure that the public in Taiwan enjoys the benefits of cross-strait exchanges and cooperation at a grassroots level.

May 11, 2011
The Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council states at a press conference that the Straits Forum will be held on a normalized basis from this year — annually over a seven-day period starting from the second Saturday in June. It also emphasizes that the "1992 Consensus" serves as an important foundation for the establishment of cross-strait political mutual trust and the development of consultations and negotiations. If this foundation is avoided or denied, cross-strait negotiations and the peaceful development of cross-strait relations would be out of the question. Regarding the World Health Organization (WHO) incident involving the dwarfing of Taiwan, the Mainland hopes that the Taiwan side can objectively and calmly regard the definition of the name in which it participates in the World Health Assembly (WHA). The Office also states that it is because of the Mainland's goodwill that the WHO Secretariat invited Chinese Taipei's Department of Health to participate in the WHA.

May 12, 2011
During a videoconference with the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), a Washington, D.C. based think tank, President Ma Ying-jeou mentions institutionalizing cross-strait rapprochement, enhancing Taiwan's contribution to international development, and aligning national defense with diplomacy as the three lines of defense to strengthen the Republic of China's national security and ensure its longevity for many more centuries to come. Cross-strait rapprochement continues to bear fruit and increase regional peace and stability. For the sake of Taiwan's economic development and national security, Taiwan has maintained "no unification, no independence, and no use of force" under the ROC Constitution, creating a virtuous cycle between the two sides of the Strait. The development of cross-strait relations in the past three years reflects a comprehensive overhaul of Taiwan's strategic approach to the world, which integrates cross-strait relations, economic and trade relations, and foreign policy in such a way as to fully maximize Taiwan's potential value in the global community.

May 13, 2011
SEF Chairman Chiang Pin-kung leads a media delegation to mainland China and meets with ARATS Chairman Chen Yunlin in Shanghai. During the meeting, Chiang expresses hope that the Seventh Chiang-Chen Talks can be held in the first half of this year. Chen states that the SEF and the ARATS are currently intensifying negotiations on the Cross-Strait Investment Protection Agreement, trade in goods, trade in services, dispute resolution mechanisms, and other ECFA follow-up issues. Moreover, the two sides are likely to begin talks on nuclear power safety cooperation soon, an issue of deep concern to compatriots on both sides of the Strait.

May 15, 2011
The MAC issues a press release to solemnly indicate that since President Ma Ying-jeou took office, the government has insisted in the process of improving cross-strait relations that the Republic of China is a sovereign and independent country. It has also positioned and developed cross-strait relations under the framework of the ROC Constitution as well as upheld the principle of "putting Taiwan first for the benefit of the people”in institutionalizing cross-strait negotiations and promoting various cross-strait exchanges, which has earned strong public support. The MAC emphasizes that the government's Mainland policy is to uphold Taiwan's sovereignty, protect Taiwan, and work for the benefit of the people. The government will not belittle itself and will absolutely not sacrifice national sovereignty and dignity.

May 17, 2011
During a meeting with Charles Tannock, Chairman of the European Parliament-Taiwan Friendship Group, President Ma Ying-jeou comments that over the past two years the Republic of China has participated in the World Health Assembly (WHA)—the most important conference of the World Health Organization (WHO) as an observer under the name "Chinese Taipei" and been represented by a minister-level official. This treatment is entirely different from that in the past, when the "Taiwan, China" name was used and no one above the rank of director generals could represent the nation at technical conferences. Upon learning that in September of last year the WHO secretly requested that the name "Taiwan, China" be used internally, Taiwan immediately lodged a strong protest, asking the WHA to respect the "Chinese Taipei" name which has been confirmed in an Exchange of Letters and used over the past three years.

May 19, 2011
During a press conference which marks the third anniversary of his inauguration, President Ma Ying-jeou states that over the past several decades, the two sides of the Taiwan Strait have been mired in conflict and confrontation. Mainland China not only threatened Taiwan's security but also intentionally sought to crowd Taiwan off the world stage. Over the past three years, the government has firmly adhered to the principles of “parity, dignity, and reciprocity”to actively improve cross-strait relations under the framework of the ROC Constitution and based on the 1992 Consensus. These efforts have helped transform the Taiwan Strait gradually from a military flashpoint into an avenue of peace. The objective of improving relations with mainland China is to pursue a peaceful and prosperous environment for Taiwan.

May 19, 2011
During an informal discussion with students of the National University of Tainan, President Ma Ying-jeou states that the basic principle in handling relations with the Mainland is that the development of cross-strait relations must lead to peace and prosperity. The so-called "Three Noes" policy—no unification, no independence, and no use of force—means maintaining the status quo. This has won the support of the overwhelming majority of the people of Taiwan. Moreover, cross-strait exchanges are based on the "1992 Consensus," under which the two sides both acknowledge the principle of "One China," but with different interpretations. Taiwan's "One China" is the "Republic of China," and there is no other possible interpretation. This is consistent with stipulations in the ROC Constitution.

May 19, 2011
During a media interview in Toronto, Taiwan Affairs Office Deputy Director Sun Yafu states that all overseas Chinese, whether from the Mainland or from Taiwan, should not only seek common ground but also hasten the assimilation of differences and jointly promote the development of cross-strait relations under the one China framework. He also emphasizes that adherence to the "1992 Consensus" and opposition to Taiwan independence are the most important factors in consolidating the foundation for the development of cross-strait relations.

May 25, 2011
The Taiwan Affairs Office states at a press conference that it will hold a seminar with related agencies and the heads of the Association of Taiwan Investment Enterprises on the Mainland and Taiwan’s Chinese National Federation of Industries. The seminar will provide explanations on issues of deep concern to Taiwan businesses, including land use, customs, taxation, financing, personal safety, and dispute resolution. In the future, this approach will continue to be systematized and provide a channel for resolving the difficulties faced by Taiwan businesses. Furthermore, the two sides are currently consolidating the political foundation for the peaceful development of cross-strait relations, seeking common ground and benign interactions, avoiding highlighting differences, and diligently watching out for and appropriately handling problems that may occur.

May 29, 2011
While attending the 2011 Mainland Policy Workshop for Student Leaders, President Ma Ying-jeou states that in facing the complex cross-strait situation, the government holds the basic principle— the "New Three Noes," meaning maintaining the status quo of "no unification, no independence, and no use of force" in the Taiwan Strait under the framework of the ROC Constitution and developing cross-strait relations on the foundation of the "1992 Consensus—one China with respective interpretations." The goal is to find the best way for the two sides to resolve problems with the shared background of Chinese culture.

May 30, 2011
At the opening ceremony of the 2011 International Law Association Asia-Pacific Regional Conference, President Ma Ying-jeou states that under the framework of the ROC Constitution, the cross-strait relationship is not one between states, but a unique relationship. We cannot and do not recognize mainland China's sovereignty, nor should we or do we deny its authority to govern the Mainland. Therefore, "mutual non-recognition and mutual non-denial" is the best interpretation of the cross-strait status quo as well as the best approach to addressing realities, shelving controversies, and promoting peace. “Mutual non-recognition of sovereignty and mutual non-denial of authority to govern”has proved to be an effective approach to handling extremely complex and sensitive cross-strait relations.

May 31, 2011
During a meeting with a visiting delegation of parliamentarians from the United Kingdom led by Deputy Speaker of the UK House of Commons Nigel Evans, MAC Minister Lai Shin-yuan emphasizes that the government's current economic strategy is to "strengthen Taiwan, connect with the Asia-Pacific region, and adopt a global outlook." While improving relations with mainland China, Taiwan is also simultaneously promoting the negotiation and signing of free trade agreements with neighboring countries. The aim of this is to put Taiwan on a fairer footing in the competitive international environment, further linking with the world. In the future, the government will continue to negotiate with mainland China on economic issues pertinent to the well-being of the people. Until conditions are ripe, Taiwan will not begin negotiations with the Mainland on political issues.

June 1, 2011
During a meeting with scholars attending the 2011 International Law Association Asia-Pacific Regional Conference, President Ma Ying-jeou states that over the past three years, the government has made every effort to forge rapprochement in the Taiwan Strait. This has brought incipient signs of peace between the two sides of the Strait and gradually helped expand Taiwan's international participation. Cross-strait relations are unique in that the governments of the two sides can on the one hand sign agreements, but have overlapping sovereignty claims on the other. This is why the government advocates the concept of "mutual non-recognition of sovereignty and mutual non-denial of authority to govern" as the best interpretation of the cross-strait status quo, providing room for the development of relations between the two sides in the future.

June 1, 2011
The Fujian High People's Court issues a service guarantee on the implementation of the Economic Zone on the West Coast of the Taiwan Strait Development Plan, requiring that all courts in the province truly implement Taiwan-related judicial cooperation agreements reached by the courts in Fujian, Zhejiang, Guangdong, and Jiangxi provinces and strengthen advance trials on Taiwan-related trials and judicial exchanges and cooperation.

June 2, 2011
While attending the ROC Centennial Forum held by National Chengchi University, President Ma Ying-jeou indicates that in facing the objective fact of mainland China's growing power, Taiwan holds a position of "mutual non-recognition of sovereignty and mutual non-denial of authority to govern." A way must be found for the two sides to get along within a mutually acceptable scope to maintain Taiwan's survival. The policy to allow Mainland students to study in Taiwan will move forward in a gradual and orderly manner, and conditions may be progressively opened in the future so young people on the two sides can soon come into contact as well as compete and cooperate.

June 4, 2011
In a statement on the Tiananmen Square Incident, President Ma Ying-jeou indicates that the current status of democracy and human rights in mainland China stands in stark contrast to its economic performance. Economic reform must be accompanied by political reform. Looking back upon the June 4th Incident, Taiwan urgently hopes that the mainland Chinese authorities will have the courage to undertake political reforms and promote the development of freedom, democracy, human rights, and rule of law. The first step toward political reform is to treat dissidents with leniency and to appreciate their value and contribution to the society. President Ma calls upon the Mainland authorities to do that by acting soon to release Liu Xiaobo, Ai Weiwei, and other dissidents, which would greatly enhance the Mainland's international image. More importantly, it would also help reduce the psychological distance between the people of the two sides.

June 4, 2011
The MAC issues a statement on the 22nd anniversary of the "Tiananmen Square Incident," emphasizing that the Mainland must squarely face and confront the important message sent by this historical incident for the development of democracy, freedom, and human rights. The MAC states that the ability to redress the Tiananmen Square Incident will be a significant yardstick of political reforms in the Mainland. The MAC hopes that as the Mainland develops its economy, it will also pay close attention to the reform of its political system as well as to the development of its civil society to ensure social fairness, judicial justice, and the protection of human rights, thereby enhancing the level of people's spiritual happiness. The MAC believes that only by cherishing universal values such as democracy, freedom, and human rights, can the two sides bridge the gap between them and jointly promote the people's well-being.

June 7, 2011
The MAC announces the results of its latest public opinion survey. The survey indicates that over 70 percent of the public support the handling of cross-strait exchange issues through institutionalized cross-strait negotiations, while 62 percent are satisfied with the results of negotiations on cross-strait agreements. Over half of the public believe that the government has upheld Taiwan's interests, while over 63 percent believe the improvement of cross-strait relations has helped expand Taiwan's international space.

June 8, 2011
The first Review Meeting of Cross-Strait Agreements'Results is held in Taipei. The two sides conduct a substantive review on implementation of the Cross-Strait Agreement on Mainland Tourists Traveling to Taiwan, the Cross-Strait Air Transport Agreement, the Cross-Strait Agreement on Cooperation in Quarantine and Inspection of Agricultural Products, the Cross-Strait Food Safety Agreement, and the Cross-Strait Joint Crime-Fighting and Judicial Mutual Assistance Agreement, and implementation on issues of concern.

June 12, 2011
At the Third Straits Forum held in Xiamen, permanent member of the Politburo Standing Committee of the Communist Party of China Jia Qinglin raises hope of five points: to practically consolidate a political foundation for the peaceful development of cross-strait relations, to constantly expand the fruits from the peaceful development of cross-strait relations, to endeavor to promote policy measures to improve the livelihood of the people, to strive to promote cross-strait connections and mutual assistance at the grassroots level, and to actively seize the rare opportunity to vigorously develop the Economic Zone on the West Coast of the Taiwan Strait.

June 12, 2011
At the Third Straits Forum in Xiamen, Taiwan Affairs Office Director Wang Yi states that "focusing on the grassroots level and sharing results" is the main substance of the guiding policy for developing cross-strait relations and new initiatives will be carried out to this end. The first is to actively implement measures to facilitate contact between the people on both sides. The second is to introduce measures to expand and deepen cross-strait exchanges and cooperation. The third is to earnestly take good and practical actions for the well being of the people on both sides. And the fourth is to urgently address issues of concern to the grassroots public on both sides. So long as the two sides continue to adhere to the "1992 Consensus" and firmly oppose any "Taiwan independence" actions, cross-strait relations will be able to advance on a steady footing.

June 12, 2011
At the opening ceremony of the Third Cross-Strait Publishing Industry Development Forum, the General Administration of Press and Publication announces five advance trial policies in Fujian: first, to allow Taiwan service providers to establish packaging and decoration printing enterprises in Fujian Province with a minimum paid-in capital requirement same as that for domestic enterprises; second, to allow Taiwan service providers to establish sole proprietorship, joint venture, or cooperative service companies in Fujian Province to provide pre-printing services such as proofreading, designing, and typesetting; third, to allow Taiwan service providers to provide distribution services in Fujian Provence for audio-visual products (including post-movie production products) on a sole proprietorship or joint venture basis; fourth, to allow Taiwan businesses to establish sole proprietorship, joint venture, or cooperative enterprises in Fujian to engage in the production of audio-visual products; and fifth, Fujian Province is to recognize proof of copyright ownership issued by related institutions in Taiwan for Taiwan copyrighted products.

June 13, 2011
The MAC issues a press release expressing hope that the policy to allow independent travel by Mainland tourists to Taiwan can be realized before the end of June. This is a direction that both sides of the Strait have steadily worked toward. After the Taiwan Strait Tourism Association (TSTA) and the Cross-Strait Tourism Exchange Association (CTEA) complete negotiations on independent travel, the SEF and the ARATS can exchange documents according to the conclusion reached between the TSTA and the CTEA and then report to the Executive Yuan for ratification.

June 14, 2011
During a meeting with Vice Chairman of the European Parliament-Taiwan Friendship Group Hans Van Baalen, MAC Minister Lai Shin-yuan states that the Mainland policy of the ROC government has always stuck to the right road. Through institutionalized cross-strait negotiations, Taiwan and mainland China have signed 15 agreements to date, all of which concern issues closely related to the livelihood of the people. Economic exchanges with mainland China can further consolidate Taiwan's economic strength and upgrade its overall competitiveness.

June 15, 2011
During an interview with the British Broadcasting Corporation's BBC World News, President Ma Ying-jeou states that mainland China is a risk as well as an opportunity for Taiwan, and it is necessary to "minimize the risk and maximize the opportunity." Taiwan's security should depend on three lines of defense: the first one is to institutionalize cross-strait relations, the second one is to heighten Taiwan's visibility and contribution on the world stage, and the last one is to enhance our national defense and diplomacy to give Taiwan a sufficient deterrent force. In facing the challenges posed by mainland China, Taiwan must develop a set of effective strategies that can truly make it secure and prosperous. With adherence to the framework of the ROC Constitution and the policy of maintaining "no unification, no independence, and no use of force," cross-strait relations will certainly be able to continue advancing on the road to peace and prosperity.

June 15, 2011
Taiwan Affairs Office Spokesperson states at a press conference that from July 1 this year, mainland China will comprehensively reduce fees for endorsements to and from mainland China as well as residence endorsements in the Mainland for persons from Taiwan. The Office also emphasizes that the progress and results achieved to date through the peaceful development of cross-strait relations have all been realized on the foundation of identifying with and embodying the "One China Principle" under the "1992 Consensus." Regarding the first group of Mainland students to be admitted to Taiwan universities, the Office states that the situation is generally good, and it hopes the Taiwan side can create a good environment and sound conditions for Mainland students to study in Taiwan.

June 21, 2011
The SEF and the ARATS complete the document exchange and confirm the Third Amendment to the Supplementary Agreement on Cross-Strait Air Transport and the First Amendment to the Cross-Strait Agreement on Travel by Mainland Residents to Taiwan.

June 22, 2011
During a meeting with Richard Bush, Director of the Center for Northeast Asian Policy Studies at the Brookings Institution, President Ma Ying-jeou states that "mutual non-recognition of sovereignty and mutual non-denial of authority to govern" is an important concept which describes the current state of cross-strait relations. This position does not run counter to the ROC Constitution's stand on the relationship between the two sides. The ROC Constitution remains the supreme law of the land.

June 22, 2011
The MAC issues a paper indicating that the policy to allow Mainland tourists to travel independently to Taiwan which moves forward in a gradual and orderly manner can truly realize the policy principle of "maximizing opportunities and minimizing risks." After allowing independent travel, high-quality tour routes and in-depth travel will enable even more Mainland tourists to deeply experience Taiwan's cultural charm, while also increasing the influence of Taiwan's soft power in the process of cross-strait exchanges. According to a public opinion survey conducted by the MAC, the vast majority of the public support the government's policy to further allow Mainland tourists to travel independently to Taiwan, moving forward in a gradual, orderly manner.

June 22, 2011
The Mainland side announces that the policy allowing Mainland residents to travel independently to Taiwan for tourism will be officially implemented on June 28. The Mainland's National Tourism Administration also issues the "Notes on Mainland Residents Traveling Independently to the Taiwan Area."

June 23, 2011
During an interview with the Apple Daily, President Ma Ying-jeou states that"mutual non-recognition of sovereignty, mutual non-denial of authority to govern" between the two sides of the Strait is a model that can enable long-term interactions. The core issue of cross-strait relations is sovereignty, which is not easy to resolve in the short-term. Under the framework of the ROC Constitution, a way can be found for the two sides to peacefully settle their disputes.

June 24, 2011
While attending the "Developing Cross-Strait Relations and Positioning Globally" Symposium for Local Elite Leaders held jointly with the Kinmen County Government, MAC Minister Lai Shin-yuan emphasizes that the government has signed 15 cross-strait agreements with mainland China to establish explicit norms for the order of cross-strait exchanges and to work for the welfare of the people on both sides. The improvement of cross-strait relations not only provides key benefits for Taiwan's development and transforms cross-strait exchanges into a positive force for Taiwan's advance in the world, it also creates new opportunities for peace and stability in East Asia and develops new avenues for Taiwan's economy to link with the world.
The MAC states that the government's Mainland policy is to uphold the highest guiding principle of "putting Taiwan first for the benefit of the people," sequentially advancing cross-strait negotiations in "mature, steady, and cadenced" steps. On the other hand, it aims at "strengthening Taiwan, connecting with the Asia Pacific region, and adopting a global outlook" when promoting cross-strait economic and trade exchanges and interactions and maintains a grasp on the well-being, rights, and interests of Taiwan's 23 million people.

June 25, 2011
While inspecting the Liaoluo Port, the Shuitou Wharf, and other "Mini Three Links" passenger and shipping wharves, MAC Minister Lai Shin-yuan states that, with a steady and cadenced approach and based on sound risk management, the government has proposed many policy ideas and specific positions in a gradual and orderly manner to ease tensions in cross-strait relations and promote the normalized and institutionalized development of mutual relations. It has also broadly reviewed, adjusted, and eased the "Mini Three Links" and other cross-strait economic and trade and exchanges policies, laying a solid foundation for cross-strait relations condusive to peace and prosperity in East Asia. The MAC will also actively promote the early expansion of policy to allow Mainland visitors to travel independently to Kinmen, Matsu, and Penghu and promote a cross-strait policy that further accords with the public will.

June 25, 2011
The SEF and the ARATS complete mutual notification to bring the Cross-Strait Agreement on Medical and Health Cooperation into effect.

June 28, 2011
The MAC issues a press release on the "ECFA's First Anniversary Outcome Review-Fulfilling the 'Three Noes' Pledge, Gradually Expanding Implementation Benefits," which indicates that the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) sets norms for cross-strait economic and trade exchanges and is conducive to improving Taiwan's overall investment environment. It also further motivates other countries to sign free trade agreements or agreements similar to economic cooperation ones with Taiwan. In the future, the government will continue to realize and implement the ECFA and sequentially promote negotiations on follow-up agreements and economic cooperation affairs to progressively expand the benefits of the ECFA.

June 29, 2011
During a meeting with a delegation from the Preventive Defense Project led by former U.S. Secretary of Defense William Perry, President Ma Ying-jeou states that the government has promoted the resumption of institutionalized cross-strait negotiations, making ties between Taiwan and mainland China the closest in 60 years. The President also expresses Taiwan's desire to participate in activities of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Taiwan hopes in the future to expand its participation in non-political international organizations that focus on the lives of ordinary people.

June 29, 2011
Taiwan Affairs Office Spokesperson states at a press conference that the Office hopes the two sides can, based on the spirit of "building mutual trust, shelving disputes, seeking common ground, and jointly creating a win-win outcome," further consolidate a common political foundation, appropriately handle political differences, and promote the constant advance of peaceful development of cross-strait relations. It also hopes that the Cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Committee and its various working groups will promptly complete negotiations on various agreements based on the principles of reciprocity, mutual benefit, and moving forward in a gradual, orderly manner. Furthermore, it emphasizes that cross-strait relationship has never been a"state-to-state" one. The basis for the development of cross-strait relations is that both the Mainland and Taiwan belong to "One China." Insistence on denying the One China framework and stubbornly adhering to the separatist position of "Taiwan independence" with "one country on each side" will only undermine the peaceful development of cross-strait relations.

June 30, 2011
During a meeting with a delegation from the Preventive Defense Project led by former U.S. Secretary of Defense Dr. William Perry, MAC Minister Lai Shin-yuan states that the government adheres to the principle of "putting Taiwan first for the benefit of the people" in promoting cross-strait relations and that the 15 agreements signed with the other side concern the livelihood and welfare of the people. Facts have proven that the government's policy is on the right course.