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Taiwan, U.S. Make Progress in Trade Talks
March 12, 2013

Taiwan and the United States have agreed on principles to guide their trade in information and communication technology services. Shown here is the ICT Month tech fair held in December in Taipei, Taiwan.

March 11, 2013

Deputy U.S. Trade Representative Demetrios Marantis praised the hard work of both sides and the positive outcomes achieved in meetings of the U.S.-Taiwan Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) Council in Taipei, Taiwan.

The meetings produced numerous results, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative said in a March 10 press release. The results included new joint statements on investment principles and information and communication technology (ICT) services, and the launch of new TIFA working groups on investment and technical barriers to trade.

The United States welcomed Taiwan’s agreement to conduct technical exchanges on science-based maximum residue levels for pesticides to enable Taiwan to enjoy the benefits of new, safer and more environmentally friendly products.

“The resumption of TIFA talks between Taiwan and the United States represents a new stage in our economic relationship that will more fully open the lines of communication on trade and investment,” Marantis said. “The dedication of our partners from Taiwan to achieving positive outcomes in investment, information and communication technology services, and other areas is a testament to President Ma’s vision for Taiwan’s economic opening and deepening ties with regional and global partners.” Ma Ying-jeou is president of Taiwan.

Marantis also welcomed Taiwan’s progress in generating strong momentum in other areas, such as the recent passage of amendments to the Trade Secret Act to increase deterrent penalties for trade-secret misappropriation and the rolling out of a two-year pilot program to help create a more stable market for medicines in Taiwan’s health care system. Marantis also emphasized his request that Taiwan’s food-safety measures, including those relating to meat exports, are based on science and consistent with international standards.

The United States and Taiwan reaffirmed the importance of cooperation in regional and multilateral groups, including the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum and the World Trade Organization. The two sides agreed on the importance of accelerating negotiations to expand the Information Technology Agreement and continuing cooperation on an International Services Agreement.

Marantis was joined in the TIFA meetings by officials from the departments of State, Commerce and Agriculture.

Members of the delegation are continuing to participate in related bilateral meetings on March 11 and 12, and both sides agreed to intensify staff-level work in the coming months to seek additional progress before the next TIFA Council meeting in Washington. More broadly, both sides committed to work in Washington and in Taipei to expand the U.S.-Taiwan trade and investment relationship.