The pan-green camp yesterday criticized an imminent decision by President Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) administration to further relax restrictions on Chinese investment, saying it could jeopardize the local economy.
The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and the Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU) said that while they did not oppose attracting foreign and Chinese investment, they were concerned at the potential ramifications of opening “sensitive” manufacturing sectors to China.
Ma has scrapped numerous restrictions on Chinese investment with more than 100 executive orders over the past three-plus years and he is now reportedly set to open up public construction and more segments of the manufacturing industry to -Chinese investors, DPP Legislator Pan -Men-an (潘孟安) said.
The government is reportedly on the brink of implementing a “third wave of relaxation” by opening up more types of public construction, including airports, highways and mass rapid transit systems, to Chinese investment, if the Executive Yuan approves a Ministry of Economic Affairs proposal today.
Pan said Taiwan has already opened 42 -percent of its manufacturing sector, 42 percent of its service sector and 24 percent of its public construction sector to China during earlier investment rule revisions.
He also questioned China’s eligibility to place bids for public construction and government projects in Taiwan because Beijing is not a signatory to the Government Procurement Agreement.
The DPP caucus demanded that the government hold transparent discussions and public hearings, to thoroughly evaluate the impact on national security, labor and the economy before making a final -decision, Pan said.
TSU Legislator Hsu Chung-hsin (許忠信) expressed concern about a reported plan to eliminate share-holding limits on Chinese investment and further relax rules governing Chinese capital in a question-and-answer session with Council of Economic and Development Minister Yiing Chii-ming (尹啟銘).
Yiing said he had not received such a proposal, but all Chinese investment would be screened by the ministry’s Investment Commission.
The commission would make its assessment based on a wide range of considerations, including the impact on national security, industrial development and the protection of sensitive technology, Yiing said.
In a press release, TSU Chairman Huang Kun-huei (黃昆輝) said his party had not ruled out boycotting budgetary reviews for the council and the ministry if the two agencies failed to produce a comprehensive five-year evaluation on the potential impact of Chinese investment on local industries.