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Jun 09, 2008, No. 031

  • Date:2008-06-09

Lai Shin-yuan: The greatest domestic consensus is to safeguard Taiwan's identity and protect the interests of the Taiwanese people

During a meeting today (June 9, 2008) with Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU) Chairman Huang Kun-huei, Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) Chairperson Lai Shin-yuan emphasized that the greatest consensus in Taiwan is to safeguard Taiwan's identity and protect the interests of the Taiwanese people. Within this consensus, the MAC will make every effort to reconcile different positions and views to find the greatest common denominator.

MAC Chairperson Lai indicated that, since her assumption of office, various sectors of society have had different opinions and evaluations regarding the MAC's policy measures, even voicing misguided or unfounded criticism. However, she can gradually come to peace and be tolerant concerning this matter. Reconciliation, after all, is necessary in the role of a mediator. It is also something that she learned from TSU Chairman Huang during her tenure at the TSU. Chairman Huang expressed approval of Chairperson Lai's performance at the MAC. He also praised Chairperson Lai for her public statements, steadiness, willingness to endure criticism to accomplish her job, and exceptional patience. All of these special qualities make her competent to serve as MAC chairperson, he said.

TSU Chairman Huang said that the main purpose of the meeting was to boost MAC Chairperson Lai's morale and convey to her the support and respect of the TSU. He also offered two views regarding cross-strait policy. Regarding the issue of the MAC's role and position, TSU Chairman Huang indicated that the chief function of the MAC is to coordinate various government agencies to formulate policies. After the Executive Yuan approves these policies, related agencies are then entrusted with implementation. They are therefore responsible for the quality of implementation. The MAC should not be required to take responsibility for everything. Chairman Huang cited as an example the illegal application by Kinmen County Magistrate Lee Chu-feng to visit mainland China.

Chairman Huang further indicated that the TSU supports the "benign opening and positive development" of cross-strait relations. The people of Taiwan all place great importance and hope on resuming negotiations between the Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF) and the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait (ARATS). The TSU is pleased to see that cross-strait exchanges are developing in a positive direction. However, it hopes that the opening of cross-strait ties does not lead to a lot of misunderstanding and problems. Chairman Huang said he therefore is especially concerned about whether or not the roles, functions, authorities, and responsibilities of the various agencies are properly coordinated, and whether or not the government has completed preparations for the related laws, regulations and accompanying measures for opening up cross-strait relations.

MAC Chairperson Lai indicated that due to TSU Chairman Huang's return to the MAC today to visit her-the only TSU member serving in the Cabinet and to share his experience, today has become the most heart-warming day for her since she assumed office as MAC chairperson. She also deeply felt Chairman Huang’s care for the younger generation. On behalf of all the colleagues at the MAC, she welcomed Chairman Huang's arrival and guidance and expressed her sincere gratitude to Chairman Huang for his long-term guidance, support and encouragement.