Legislators call for better services for Taiwan business on mainland

22:01, February 11, 2010      

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Legislators have called for more effective and a wider range of services for Taiwan businesses on the Chinese mainland in a bid to improve the investment environment and attract more capital from the island.

Two groups of legislators headed by Hua Jianmin and Yan Junqi, vice chairpersons of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC), the top legislature, concluded a 20-day inspection tour to see how Taiwan business people's rights were protected by the Law on Protection of Investment by Compatriots from Taiwan.

Local governments on the mainland had helped lift Taiwan business people out of difficulties during the global financial crisis, according to the inspection groups.

Yeh Chuen-rong, head of the Taiwan Business Association in Dongguan, a major manufacturing hub in south China's Guangdong province, said his company's stock price hit a record low of just a little over 6 new Taiwan dollars (0.19 U.S. dollars) during the worst of the crisis but had since rebounded to 24 new Taiwan dollars.

Many Taiwan-funded companies suffered from a slide in exports last year during the global financial crisis but managed to come back because of measures taken by local governments.

Dongguan's local government initiated a program in 2008 providing 5 billion yuan (732 million U.S. dollars) to facilitate financing, upgrade the industrial model of Taiwan-funded companies, increase science and technology innovation, and alleviate the burden of starting a new business.

Another 30 million yuan was used to set up guarantor enterprises to help fund raising for Taiwan-funded companies, according to the legislators.

In Zhangzhou city in east China's Fujian Province, no Taiwan companies shut because of the global downturn in 2009, the inspection groups discovered.

The city's actual use of Taiwan capital increased to 340 million U.S. dollars, and the export value to Taiwan hit 220 million U.S. dollars, both sums were an increase of nearly 40 percent year on year.

Hua Jianmin and Yan Junqi stressed during the inspection tours that local governments should help solve practical problems for Taiwan business people, and give them confidence to cooperate with the mainland.

The NPC Standing Committee passed the Law on Protection of Investment by Compatriots from Taiwan in March 1994.

In December 1999, the State Council drew up detailed rules for implementation of the law. The rules cover a wide range of issues, from the education of Taiwan investors' children to border entry requirements.

The legislators are now seeking ways to enhance protection of the rights of Taiwan business people and update some of the provisions as major changes have taken place during the past decade.

Source: Xinhua
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