No political preconditions for cross-strait exchanges: MAC

Setting political preconditions for exchanges and cooperation between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait is not conducive to a normal and healthy development of cross-strait relations, the Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) said on Saturday.

Commenting during a fair to promote tourism and agricultural products from eight Taiwanese cities and counties governed by the opposition Kuomintang (KMT)-led pan-blue camp that opened that day in Beijing, the MAC noted that the central government has always supported local governments and enterprises that conduct activities in China to promote their respective products and tourism.

"It is not appropriate either to set political preconditions or offer preferential treatment to different parties for cross-strait exchanges and cooperation," the council said in a statement, adding that it should stick to the market mechanism, which will be helpful for the good of the people and for the healthy development of enterprises of the two sides of the strait.

The MAC also urged Chinese authorities to take a healthy, comprehensive and pluralistic scope of exchanges with Taiwan and to hold cross-strait talks through the existing mechanism in order to improving mutual understanding and protecting interests and rights of the people of the two sides.

The event, which is taking place at the Beijing Exhibition Center and will run through Dec. 26, features 176 booths showcasing tea, kaoliang liquor, organic rice, pork balls, sausages and other agricultural products from Taiwan.

The eight pan-blue administrative areas -- Miaoli, Hsinchu, Nantou, Taitung, Hualien, Lienchiang and Kinmen counties, and New Taipei City -- are favored by China because their chiefs recognize the "1992 consensus," which refers to a tacit agreement reached in 1992 between China and Taiwan, which was then under a Kuomintang (KMT) government, that there is only one China, with both sides free to interpret what that means.

China has insisted on the "1992 consensus" as the political foundation for exchanges between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait and has frozen official contacts with Taiwan in retaliation for President Tsai Ing-wen's (???) refusal to accept the "1992 consensus."

Tsai's administration has voiced opposition to China's policy of dividing Taiwan into "pan-blue" and "pan-green" areas which cover other cities and counties that are headed by pan-green politicians, mostly of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), which has never recognized the existence of such an agreement.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel