Mainland hopes smooth cross-Strait ties after electing new KMT chairman







BEIJING  |  2015-01-14 11:52:19


Mainland hopes 

smooth cross-Strait ties 

after electing new KMT chairman


By Li Huizi


The mainland hopes peaceful cross-Strait ties continue after the island’s ruling Kuomintang (KMT) Party elects a new chairman, a spokesman said on Wednesday of January 14.

Political foundations between the two sides should be consolidated and positive interactions should continue, said Ma Xiaoguang, spokesman for the State Council Taiwan Affairs Office, at a press conference.

KMT will elect a new chairperson on January 17, following the party’s defeat in the island’s biggest-ever local elections last November.

Taiwan leader Ma Ying-jeou stepped down as the chairman on December 3, handing over the reins to the party’s First Vice Chairman Wu Den-yih as interim chief.






BEIJING  |   2015-01-14 14:01:22

 Cross-Strait trade hit 198 bln USD last year

By Li Huizi

Trade values between the Chinese mainland and Taiwan reached 198.31 billion U.S. dollars last year, up 0.6 percent year on year, a mainland spokesman said in Beijing on Wednesday of January 14.

The mainland ran a trade deficit of 105.77 billion U.S. dollars with Taiwan last year, said Ma Xiaoguang, spokesman with the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council, at a press conference.

Ma said exports from the mainland to Taiwan reached 46.28 billion U.S. dollars, while imports from Taiwan were worth more than 152 billion U.S. dollars.

Last year, 9.41 million trips were made across the Taiwan Strait, hitting a record high, with more than 5.36 million trips made from Taiwan to the mainland and 4 million heading for the island, Ma said.

The number of regular cross-Strait passenger flights last year increased to 840 per week, he said, adding cargo flights increased to 84 per week.






BEIJING  |  2015-01-14 18:44:30

 New flight route over Taiwan Strait negotiated: Mainland office

By Ren Ke

The Chinese mainland said Wednesday that a new flight path over the Taiwan Strait was agreed upon through negotiations between the aviation authorities of the two sides.

Spokesman for the State Council’s Taiwan Affairs Office, Ma Xiaoguang, said at a regular press conference that the M503 flight route, which can be used from March 5, was designed in cooperation with the United States and other countries, and approved by the International Civil Aviation Organization.

M503′s three connecting flight lanes are necessary linking passageways, Ma said, adding that air control authorities will strengthen communication with neighboring areas to ensure flight safety.

The new route is designed to relieve the pressure of increased flights around Shanghai and the Pearl River Delta in south China.

Ma said he hoped the residents of Taiwan understood the need for such an important route.

The mainland’s civil aviation agency, Ma said, ensured clear communication with its Taiwanese counterpart. The two sides have held two rounds of negotiation on the route and will continue to do so after M503 is put into service.






TAIPEI  | 2015-01-14 23:34:58

 Bird flu outbreak expands across Taiwan

By Wang Di and Xu Xueyi

Nineteen more poultry farms in Taiwan had been found to be infected with avian influenza by Wednesday morning, bringing to 39 the total number of infected farms on the island, said agriculture authorities.

Except for two in northern Taoyuan County, all of the new additions were in southern Taiwan, including the counties of Changhua, Yunlin, Chiayi and Pingtung, and Kaohsiung City.

A total of 94,975 infected ducks and geese from the 39 farms need to be culled. The killing of 36,000 had been completed by 11 a.m. on Wednesday of January 14.

The bird flu outbreak is expanding. A chicken farm in Tainan was confirmed as being affected by the virus in the afternoon; a duck farm in central Nantou county has reported abnormal deaths of poultry and testing is under way; a chicken farm in northern Miaoli County reported suspicious chicken deaths; a movement ban has been imposed on poultry.

The first case in the latest outbreak was confirmed on Jan. 9 when a chicken farm in Pingtung was found to have been hit by the H5N2 virus.

To prevent the virus from spreading, the agriculture authority has required that from Tuesday, all farms infected with the H5 strain of the bird flu virus that have seen a death rate of 20 percent or more within a span of two days will be subject to culling.






HONG KONG  |  2015-01-14 16:24:33

 Taiwan stocks close 0.55 pct lower

By Wang Xiaoni

Taiwan’s share prices closed down 0.55 percent on Wednesday of January 14 with the weighted index down 51.57 points at 9,180.23, according to news reaching here from Taipei.

Turnover totaled 91.99 billion new Taiwan dollars (about 2.89 billion U.S. dollars) during the trading session.









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