State Council Taiwan Affairs Office Director Wang Yi hosted a welcoming cocktail party Friday for the Taiwan delegation to attend the Boao Forum for Asia.
The Boao Forum for Asia provides an important platform for economists on both sides of the Taiwan Straits to exchange of views and explore further cooperation, he told a Taiwan delegation led by Fredrick Chien, chief advisor of Taiwan's Cross-Straits Common Market Foundation.
Wang expressed the hope that economists on both sides, give a strong signal to the world, through the forum, that the two sides will join hands to cope with the financial crisis and show their firm confidence in achieving common development and prosperity.
The global financial crisis presents formidable challenges to economic growth on both sides. Nevertheless, the obvious improvement and development of the cross-straits relations have provided the two sides with a rare opportunity to deepen their mutual beneficial cooperation, Wang said.
The mainland official praised the Taiwan foundation for its contribution to the promotion of the cross-straits economic and trade exchanges.
The two sides should jointly work for the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation and share the pride and dignity as Chinese in the world, Wang said.
Wang called the year 2008 a turning-point for the cross-straits relations and 2009 a "year of development" for the cross-straits ties.
In a meeting prior to the party, Wang told Fredrick Chien that the mainland will conduct preliminary talks on an economic cooperation framework agreement (ECFA) with Taiwan, if the island province is willing to do so.
In response, Chien vowed to strengthen bilateral cooperation and enhance exchanges in finance and trade to turn the economic downturn into an opportunity for development.