::: TSR Weekly Report
2019-03-02 | NO.43(9) epaper |
Note to Readers
TSR is pleased to announce newly published books about Taiwan and East Asia on its website and in its weekly newsletter. If you're a scholar or your book is coming out from an academic press, please send the title of your book and a link to the publisher's web site to TSR's Senior Editor, James Lee (JL18@alumni.princeton.edu).
Cross-Strait Relations
Impact of China's '31 Measures' Exaggerated: MAC (2019-02-28)
(CNA, By Miao Zong-han and Chung Yu-chen) According to Taiwan's Mainland Affairs Council (MAC), China's "31 measures" to attract Taiwanese talent and investment have been exaggerated. The MAC stated that statistics have shown that Taiwanese investment in China has declined and Taiwanese with China's residence permit have not been given preferential treatment as claimed by Chinese authorities. The MAC remarked that the aim of the "31 measures" is to promote China's intention to unify with Taiwan. <Accessed 2019-02-28>

Chinese Bombers Fly Training Missions Near Taiwan: MND (2019-02-28)
(CNA, By Joseph Yeh) Taiwan's Ministry of National Defense (MND) announced on Wednesday that it is closely monitoring Chinese military aircraft which flew to the South China Sea. The MND further stated that the military will continue to be vigilant in ensuring Taiwan's security. <Accessed 2019-02-28>

Beijing Says It Can Ease Power and Water Shortages on Taiwan’s Quemoy, Matsu Islands (2019-03-02)
(South China Morning Post, By Laura Zhou) Beijing says it is prepared to supply electricity and water to islands controlled by Taipei in the Taiwan Strait despite escalating tensions between the two sides. An Fengshan, spokesman for the Taiwan Affairs Office in Beijing, also said their different social systems should not be “an excuse” to separate the country, and any deal between the mainland and Taipei should be struck in the interests of a “peaceful unification” agenda. <Accessed 2019-03-06>
U.S.-Taiwan Relations
China Protests against US ‘Provocation’ after Two American Warships Pass through Taiwan Strait (2019-02-26)
(South China Morning Post, By Zhenhua Lu) China has protested after two US Navy warships sailed though the Taiwan Strait. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang told a daily press conference on Tuesday that “We resolutely oppose the United States taking provocative actions”. <Accessed 2019-03-06>

US Should Stick to Taiwan Relations Act, Albright Says
(Taipei Times/CNA) During a meeting at the US House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs, former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright remarked that the US should continue to adhere to the Taiwan Relations Act (TRA). Albright stated that the US has to make clear that the US-Taiwan relation is important. Albright also expressed that she does not wish to see China filling in the vacuum as the US withdraws from the international scene. <Accessed 2019-03-01>

What the Latest Opinion Polls Say About Taiwan (2019-03-05)
(National Interest, By Dennis V. Hickey) Perhaps most worrisome for Americans is a growing perception (or misperception) among some Taiwanese that the United States will support Taiwan militarily even if it provokes a war with a declaration of independence. <Accessed 2019-03-06>
Taiwan's Domestic Politics and Foreign Relations
 Lee Chin-yung Named to Head Central Election Commission (2019-02-25)
(CNA, By Ku Chuan, Lu Yao-chien and Frances Huang) Cabinet spokesperson Kolas Yotaka announced on Monday that former Yunlin County Magistrate Lee Chin-yung has been nominated as chairman of the Central Election Commission (CEC) by the Executive Yuan. Kolas attributed Lee's nomination to his experience in legal affairs and familiarity with election work. <Accessed 2019-02-26>

Taiwan's National Defense Industry to Create 8,000 Jobs: President (2019-02-25)
(CNA, By Liao Yu-yang, Wei Shu and Elizabeth Hsu) During a speech at at convention of local suppliers that supports Taiwan's own naval vessel program, president Tsai Ing-wen announced that the nation's defense industry could create approximately 8,000 jobs. The president praised Taiwan's shipbuilding industry and called the national defense an "important strategic industry". <Accessed 2019-02-26>

Foundation to Unveil New 228 Report (2019-02-26)
(Taipei Times/CNA) The 228 Memorial Foundation announced on Sunday that it will issue the latest version of its report on the 228 Incident in July. While refusing to disclose details of the report, foundation chairman Hsueh Hua-yuan remarked that the report is based on recently obtained historical documents on the event. Hsueh further added that the report will focus on transitional justice and people responsible for the Incident. <Accessed 2019-02-26>

Tearing Down Memorial A Waste of Resources: Su (2019-02-28)
(Taipei Times, By Sean Lin) Taiwan premier Su Tseng-chang advised against tearing down the Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall in Taipei. Su remarked that since the memorial hall serves a variety of purposes and was built using taxpayers' money, the memorial hall should be properly used. <Accessed 2019-02-28>

Premier, KMT Lawmaker Spar Over Foreign Policy (2019-02-28)
(Taipei Times, By Sean Lin) Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Tung Hui-chen's criticism toward Taiwan president Tsai Ing-wen for the worsening of the cross-strait relations and China's growing aggression has sparked a debate between Tung and the Cabinet members and premier Su Tseng-chang. In responding to Tung, Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) Minister Chen Ming-tong defended the government's swift resolve toward China's "one country, two systems" political formula. <Accessed 2019-02-28>

Former AIT Head Cautions Against Partisan Divide in Taiwan (2019-02-28)
(CNA, By Chiang Chin-ye and Evelyn Kao) According to former American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) Chairman Richard Bush and U.S. think tank scholar Ryan Hass, a divided Taiwan would benefit China. In their report titled "Taiwan's Democracy and the China Challenge", Bush and Hass remarked that Taiwanese political leaders have not been able to come up with tough choices to address the challenges Taiwan faces from China. They suggested for Taiwan to focus on institutional change and for the two major political parties to work toward building a centrist consensus. <Accessed 2019-02-28>

President Pledges to Further Investigate 228 Incident (2019-02-28)
(CNA, By Wen Kuei-hsiang and Chung Yu-chen) In addressing an overseas group of family members of some of the 228 Incident victims, Taiwan president Tsai Ing-wen announced that the government is making efforts to identify more victims of the Incident. Tsai praised the government's tireless efforts for the past two years in implementing transitional justice in the nation and expressed hope that families of the victims can continue to offer suggestions and participate in discussions. <Accessed 2019-02-28>

Taiwan: Can Learn From Germany on Transitional Justice: Speaker (2019-02-28)
(CNA, By Wang Yang-yu and Evelyn Kao) During a meeting with a visiting parliamentary delegation from Germany, Legislative Speaker Su Jia-chyuan remarked that Taiwan can learn from Germany on transitional justice. Su also thanked German parliamentarians for their continued support for Taiwan. Klaus-Peter Willsch, Chairman of the German-Taiwan Parliamentary Friendship Group who is leading the delegation, stated that the delegation has met with several organizations to discuss issues on developing renewable energy and establishing a nuclear-free nation. <Accessed 2019-02-28>

Illegal Immigration Disrupts Taiwan’s Economic Shift Away from China and Towards Southeast Asia (2019-02-28)
(South China Morning Post, By Ralph Jennings) Nearly 2,000 visitors have violated Taiwan’s immigration rules since they were relaxed three years ago to boost the self-ruled island’s slow moving economy and reduce its reliance on mainland China. Tourists have been pouring in from South and Southeast Asia in response to Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen’s New Southbound Policy, introduced in 2016, to shift her island’s economic weight to those regions. <Accessed 2019-03-06>

Taipei Mayor Touts Israel's Strengths After 5-Day Visit (2019-02-28)
(CNA, By Wu Jui-chi and Flor Wang) Upon returning from a five-day visit to Israel, Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je expressed hope that Taiwan and Israel could cooperate more especially in the innovative industries. Ko further added that both nations will discuss on cooperation opportunities in developing autonomous vehicles and information security. <Accessed 2019-02-28>

KMT to Retain Usual Selection Process for Presidential Candidate (2019-02-28)
(CNA, By Yu Hsiang and Elizabeth Hsu) During Kuomintang's (KMT) Central Standing Committee meeting, the party has decided not to change the party's selection process for its presidential candidate for the 2020 election. KMT's presidential primary involves public opinion polls and party member surveys. <Accessed 2019-02-28>

KMT Bigwig to Announce Presidential Bid (2019-02-28)
(CNA, By Liu Kuan-ting and Flor Wang) Political sources announced on Wednesday that fomer Legislative Yuan Speaker Wang Jinping of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) is expected to announce his presidential bid at the Taipei International Convention Center next week. Wang will have to gain the party's nomination in light of the intense competition from other presidential hopefuls within the party. <Accessed 2019-02-28>

KMT Brass Call for Peace, National Solidarity on 228 (2019-03-01)
(Taipei Times, By Shih Hsiao-kuang, Lin Liang-sheng and Jake Chung) Senior Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) urged the nation to maintain solidarity and face the past together. KMT Chairman Wu Den-yih remarked that KMT would restore order once the party is in power. Meanwhile, former president Ma Ying-jeou urged the public to end violent acts and language. <Accessed 2019-03-01>

Ko's Holocaust 'Publicity' Remark Sparks Criticism (2019-03-01)
(Taipei Times, By Shen Pei-ya, Kuo An-chia and Sherry Hsiao) Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je's remark on the massacre of 6 million Jews by Nazi Germany as the Jews' international publicity has sparked criticism. In his defense, Ko stated that Israelis worldwide are united because of the incident. <Accessed 2019-03-01>

Taiwan Commits to Regional Stability After Hanoi Summit Breakdown (2019-03-01)
(CNA, By Yeh Su-ping and Chung Yu-chen) In a Facebook post, President Tsai Ing-wen stated that Taiwan will continue to cooperate with the international community and commit itself to ensure stability and peace in the region in light of the Hanoi summit breakdown. Tsai also advised Taiwanese to avoid travelling to Jammu and Kashmir due to the escalating tensions between India and Pakistan. <Accessed 2019-03-01>

White Terror Victims were 'Communists': New Party (2019-03-02)
(Taipei Times, By Lin Liang-sheng and Jake Chung) The New Party's youth wing remarked that the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) should not use the revolution of White-Terror era victims as sorrow for pro-Taiwan independence supporters. According to youth wing member Lin Ming-cheng, the people who were executed during the White Terror era were Chinese Communist Party members or socialists. <Accessed 2019-03-01>

Transitional Justice 'More Lenient' than in Germany, Committee Says in Rebuke (2019-03-02)
(Taipei Times, By Chen Yu-fu and Johnathan Chin) While the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Wu Den-yih stated that Taiwan's transitional justice model is not based on Germany's, Ill-gotten Party Assets Settlement Committee Chairman Lin Feng-jeng stated that Taiwan's transitional justice efforts are lenient compared to Germany's. According to Lin, despite seizing more than NT$80 billion worth of assets, the KMT continues to use illicitly obtained properties as its offices. <Accessed 2019-03-01>
U.S.-China Relations
US Justice Department Official Calls China a ‘Foreign Adversary’ that Lacks Commitment to Rule of Law (2019-02-26)
(South China Morning Post, By Robert Delaney) US Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein called China a “foreign adversary”, described its recent arrests of some foreign citizens as a form of political retaliation and said that the country’s placement of ethnic Uygurs into camps showed that Beijing lacks modern judicial standards. <Accessed 2019-03-06>

US Withdrawal From INF Treaty: Impact on Asia
(The Diplomat, By Mercy A. Kuo) Gregory Kulacki, China Project Manager at the Union of Concerned Scientists, offers his views on the United States's withdrawal from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty. <Accessed 2019-03-02>

Japan ‘Rooting for Donald Trump’ in China Trade War, But Urges US Not to ‘Monopolise’ Any Benefits (2019-03-01)
(South China Morning Post, By Finbarr Bermingham) A Japanese minister has urged the United States not to “monopolise” the concessions it extracts from China as part of any trade war deal, urging US President Donald Trump to share them with the rest of the world. <Accessed 2019-03-06>

US-China Relationship Must Not ‘Return to the Cold War’: Beijing Diplomat Asks Washington to Be Patient (2019-03-01)
(South China Morning Post, By Owen Churchill and Wendy Wu) Structural reforms to China’s economic and trade policies being pushed by the United States could take years to enact, Beijing’s ambassador to Washington said on Wednesday. Cui Tiankai, the Chinese ambassador to the US, also hit out at the US government’s criminal action against Chinese telecoms company Huawei, calling it “very stupid” and “absurd”. <Accessed 2019-03-06>

Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou’s Extradition Case Will Go Ahead, Canada Says after ‘Thorough Review of Evidence’ (2019-03-02)
(South China Morning Post, By Wendy Wu and POLITICO) Canada said on Friday it would launch proceedings to extradite a top executive of Chinese telecom giant Huawei to the United States – setting the stage for a lengthy diplomatic dust-up among the three countries and threatening to throw a wrench into US-China trade talks. <Accessed 2019-03-06>

‘Cooperation the Best Way Forward’ as China and US Work to End Trade War, Chinese Official Says (2019-03-02)
(South China Morning Post, By Guo Rui and Catherine Wong) A senior Chinese government official said negotiators from China and the United States were working on the next steps to end their trade war, after Washington demanded Beijing remove all tariffs on American agricultural products. Guo Weimin, spokesman for China’s political advisory body, on Saturday said a trade deal between the two nations would send a positive signal for the global economy. <Accessed 2019-03-06>

Stocks Surge on US Decision to Postpone China Tariff Hike (2019-02-27)
(The Diplomat, By Joe McDonald) Global stock markets rose this week as President Trump announced that he would postpone the introduction of new tariffs on Chinese imports into the United States, a sign that the two countries were making progress on their trade disputes. Both governments remain optimistic about solving their differences, although there is no solution yet. There is no new date for tariff introductions yet. <Accessed 2019-03-02>

Why China Isn't Mourning the Collapse of the Trump-Kim Summit (2019-03-01)
(The Diplomat, By Shannon Tiezzi) China has a vested interest in reducing tensions on the Korean Peninsula, so Trump and Kim's Hanoi summit ending early delivered a blow to China's hopes for the near future. However, Beijing remains upbeat about the possibility for future discussions. Both the United States and the Democratic People's Republic of Korean insist that the early end was not indicative of a failure to negotiate, with President Trump claiming that discussions went very well. <Accessed 2019-03-02>

How Latin America Factors Into the US-China Rivalry (2019-02-27)
(The Diplomat, By Leigh Wedell) Chinese companies, particularly technology start-ups, are increasingly targeting Latin American countries as the political environment in the United States grows more hostile towards China. However, Chinese investment in Latin America has drawn international scrutiny regarding resource extraction and lending processes. The debate over recognition of Taipei or Beijing for each Latin American country also has grown, especially as numerous countries in the region have switched their recognition since 2017. <Accessed 2019-03-02>

China's Domestic Politics and Foreign Relations
China’s Entrepreneurs Are Wary of Its Future (2019-02-23)
(New York Times, By Li Yuan) It is unclear how many people saw the article before it disappeared from China’s heavily censored internet. But Mr. Chen said publicly what many businesspeople in China are saying privately: China’s leadership has mismanaged the world’s second-largest economy, and China’s entrepreneur class is losing confidence in the country’s future. <Accessed 2019-03-06>

RSF to Issue Report on China's Global Media Influence Campaign
(CNA, By Joseph Yeh) During a press conference, Cedric Alviani, the director of Reporters Without Borders's East Asia (Taipei) bureau, announced that a report detailing China's growing influence in the world media will be released on March 27. According to Alviani, China has been trying to influence international media outlets to create a postive image of China. Alviani expressed hope that the report will inform the world of China's campaign. <Accessed 2019-02-26>

PacNet #18 – Seven Myths About China (2019-02-28)
(Pacific Forum, By Paul Monk) Debating the implications of the rise of Chinese wealth, power, and ambition has become a global cottage industry. Unfortunately, we are surrounded by myths about China that hamper debate. Here are seven that need dismantling: <Accessed 2019-03-07>

Sri Lanka’s Debt Problem Isn’t Made in China (2019-02-28)
(East Asia Forum, By Dushni Weerakoon) Global media and numerous ‘experts’ routinely assert that Sri Lanka was forced to cede a strategically important port to China after being lured into a debt trap by easy Chinese loans. This story has now become part of the wider narrative of how China is using the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) to achieve its diplomatic and strategic aims through debt diplomacy. But it is a story based more on fiction than fact. <Accessed 2019-03-06>

‘The Time of Naivety Is Over’: Europe’s China Problem Is on the Agenda at Next European Commission Meeting as States Focus on Competition (2019-02-28)
(South China Morning Post, By Keegan Elmer) Competition from China will be in the spotlight at next month’s meeting of the European Commission, with Germany and France expected to push for a new common strategy that may include changes to the EU’s industrial policy. <Accessed 2019-03-06>

Next Stops: Europe and United States. Chinese President Xi Jinping to Head to Italy, France and Florida on Trade and Tech Missions (2019-02-28)
(South China Morning Post, By Zhenhua Lu) Chinese President Xi Jinping is expected to head to Europe and the United States on his first overseas trip of the year to try to ease tensions over trade and technology security. After the annual National People’s Congress gathering in Beijing, Xi is expected visit Italy in late March and then France, with another planned stop at US President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida. <Accessed 2019-03-06>

How Far Does the China Belt and Road ‘Pushback’ Really Go?
(The Diplomat, By Prashanth Parameswaran) While the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) suffers several obstacles on its path to implementation, observers must be careful not to overestimate the amount of "pushback" China is receiving from partner states. Not only is "pushback" only one of many responses heard from partners, the supposed resistance is often due to specific projects, not necessarily to the geopolitical implications of the BRI in general. Furthermore, a sense of resistance is also not necessarily indicative that countries will make the necessary improvements to address issues within said countries. <Accessed 2019-03-02>

Waiting for the Global Renminbi (2019-03-01)
(East Asia Forum, By David Lubin) What all this means is that it might be possible one day for China to have its cake and eat it — in other words, for the renminbi to be a truly global currency and yet for Beijing to retain a discretionary approach to managing the capital account. But it will probably take a Bretton Woods-like renegotiation of the international monetary system to get there. <Accessed 2019-03-06>

Has the ‘Free Tibet‘ Movement Fizzled Due to China’s Rise? (2019-03-01)
(The Diplomat, By Robert Farley) While activism against the Chinese occupation of Tibet has continued within Tibet, Western activism has noticeably decreased since the 1990s as the Chinese Communist Party has pushed back. As prominent activists have left the spotlight and the CCP engages in greater control over what the public can see regarding China and Chinese activities, Tibetan activism has not gained as much of a following. However, the future may bring changes, especially given new strategic competition between Beijing and Washington. <Accessed 2019-03-02>

China’s Vision for the Belt and Road in South Asia (2019-03-02)
(The Diplomat, By Antara Ghosal Singh) China maintains a strong vision for the Belt and Road Initiative in South Asia, one of the project's key regional focal points. Through four distinct cooperation projects with various South Asian countries, China advances its promotion of the Chinese Dream in South Asia. However, China still faces several issues in its implementation, the least of which are political instability and debt accumulation. <Accessed 2019-03-02>

China’s Get-Rich Space Program (2019-02-28)
(The Diplomat, By Namrata Goswami) China's space program is, according to President Xi Jinping, one of the most important investments China is carrying out to achieve the goals it has set for itself by 2049. China's space program's objective is to create a space-based economy for China, leading to greater wealth creation for the country. However, this may lead to global problems for space exploration and resources, especially as China leaves a greater mark and potentially pushes out other space powers. <Accessed 2019-03-02>

Territorial Disputes, the Korean Peninsula, and Other Regional Issues
Territorial Disputes

Respect Chinese Sovereignty in South China Sea, Beijing Warns Washington (2019-03-01)
(South China Morning Post, By Catherine Wong) Beijing has accused Washington of “stirring up trouble” with its planned increase in naval operations in the disputed waters of the South China Sea. Defence ministry spokesman Ren Guoqiang said China resolutely opposed the plan, describing it as a violation of its sovereignty and security, as well as reflecting “disregard for international laws and rules”. <Accessed 2019-03-06>

The Korean Peninsula

Kim Jong-un Arrives in Vietnam, for a Visit About More Than Trump (2019-02-25)
(New York Times, By Mike Ives) However the summit meeting turns out, Mr. Kim’s trip to Vietnam will be symbolic in other ways. That is partly because Vietnam and North Korea have a long friendship that includes cooperation during the Vietnam War, as well as complex relationships with China, their mutual neighbor. <Accessed 2019-03-06>

Pentagon Again Suspends Large-Scale Military Exercises With South Korea
(New York Times, By Helene Cooper) The United States and South Korea will suspend two large-scale joint military exercises this spring, two American officials said Friday, as part of President Trump’s efforts to maintain the truce he has struck with Kim Jong-un, the leader of North Korea. A limited version of the training drills, however, are still expected to go forward, officials said. <Accessed 2019-03-06>

Why Donald Trump’s Failure to Reach Deal with North Korea in Vietnam Could Be a Win for China (2019-03-01)
(South China Morning Post, By Shi Jiangtao) Beijing stands to gain from the abrupt end to the second summit between North Korea and the United States, according to Chinese analysts. They believe that the no-deal summit is actually in China’s interest, and that Beijing’s influence is set to increase as both Washington and Pyongyang will want to work more closely with China to extract a future agreement over denuclearisation, sanctions relief and regional stability. <Accessed 2019-03-06>

Other Regional Issues

Can the Centre Hold in Asian Affairs?
(East Asia Forum, By the Editorial Board) ASEAN will need to be more strategically proactive to continue to provide stability for its people as well as in broader regional and global affairs. <Accessed 2019-03-06>

Contact: James Lee, Senior Editor 

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