JANUARY 2009 Democracy &

Progress
* A MONTHLY NEWSLETTER PUBLISHED BY THE DPP’S DEPARTMENT OF INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS.

Happy Lunar New Year!
“DEMOCRACY & PROGRESS”
Department of International Affairs
Democratic Progressive Party 8F, No. 30, Pei-Ping East Rd. Taipei, Taiwan t. 886-2-23929989 ext. 306 f. 886-2-23930342 e-mail: foreign@dpp.org.tw web: http://www.dpp.org.tw

Dr. Tsai Ing-wen’s Open Letter to Members of the DPP: “Break out of This Stagnation, Be the Party That Surprises Everyone” (p2) DPP Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen Returns from a Successful Relationship-Building Trip to Manila (p3) Taiwan Human Rights Updates (Part 2) (p5)
Dr. Tsai Ing-wen received a delegation from Freedom House and expressed her concern over problems with freedom of speech, freedom of assembly and political freedom in Taiwan.

“Taiwan Citizen Conference on National Affairs”(Part 1):What & Why? (p7) Since President Ma Ying-jeou took office in May, his government has carried out many policies
that have resulted in the erosion of the nation’s sovereignty, economy, democracy and human rights. Thus, the DPP and TSU have decided to co-sponsor the “Taiwan Citizen Conference on National Affairs” to provide the public with a chance to voice their opinions….

Director: Lin, Chen-wei Deputy Director: Huang, Chih-ta Editor-In-Chief: Liu, Hsiaoching Editor: Mike Fonte Staff Writer:

2009 “Three-in-One” Local Election in Taiwan (Part 1) (p8)
What is the “Three-in-One” local election, how will the DPP nominate its candidates this time and who will the candidates be?

A Statement From The DPP in Response to Hu Jintao's 'Six-Points' Proposition (p9) The DPP’s Appeal to the Ma Government to Voice Taiwan’s Support for China’s “Charter 08” Activists (p10) A Response to the KMT-CCP Forum: The DPP Calls for Supervision by the Legislature and Citizen Participation & The Risks and Effects of -1Signing a Financial MOU with China (p11) Highlights of the 2008 DPP Public Survey Results (p14)

James Chen

Please note that articles in this publication should not be used as direct quotation unless with the explicit permission from the editor.

Britt Mercadante

Open Letter to Members of the DPP: “Break Out of This Stagnation, Be the Party That Surprises Everyone”
Dr. Tsai Ing-wen
January 1, 2009
A political party can survive in a society only if its policies express the people’s desire to push for social progress. If a political party becomes stagnant, stops moving forward and fails to respond to the people’s expectations, this party will inevitably lose the faith and trust of the people. This is the belief I have held since the first day I became the Chairperson of the DPP. Every day I feel myself becoming more “DPP,” in that I have become aware of the great responsibility this party shoulders for Taiwan. For more than 200 days, I have gone over many things with each one of you: together we dried our tears and worked hard to get back on our feet following the election defeat earlier this year; together on August 14 we witnessed former President Chen Shui-bian holding his press conference; together we took to the streets on August 30th and October 25th respectively to protest the incompetent administration of Ma Ying-jeou and ask the Ma administration to admit responsibility for its failing performance; together we declared to the world on November 6 that Taiwan is a democratic and sovereign state. In my heart, I know clearly that it is your support that makes me a better chairperson. In return, my responsibility is to reform and improve the DPP. These past few days, I have met with many people who have sent their warmest support and highest expectations for the DPP. Many of them didn’t know each other, but they all sent me the same message: the future of Taiwan is in danger and the DPP must be strong and stand by the people to overcome all the current difficulties. Taiwan needs the DPP. In 2009, the DPP must be able to actively respond to the people’s expectations by taking a leading role in social progress. The DPP’s social responsibility is clear: if Taiwanese society becomes divided under the administration of Ma Ying-jeou, the party must play a role in bringing together public opinion; if the government reverts back to its authoritarian nature, we must preserve freedom and democracy; if the

government supports pro-big enterprise policies, we must speak for the middle class, laborers and farmers; if Ma’s cross-strait policies lean toward China too much, the DPP must safeguard Taiwan’s sovereignty and consolidate Taiwanese identity in civil society, 2009 is a critical year for the DPP, and not only because of the upcoming local elections for mayors and county magistrates. The rights of the Taiwanese people have been rapidly eroding, and, as a result, the Taiwanese people have become frustrated, as they have lost their faith in party politics. The failure and incompetence of Ma Ying-jeou’s administration will not automatically bring votes to the DPP. We have
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to allow people to observe our self-examination and change and to see that our determined spirit serves our society. The DPP’s next step should be the next step of Taiwan. In 2009, we will present our view and take action on DPP party reform, national polity, homeland planning, economic development, cross-strait policies and social justice. Our positions and action plan will not be limited to a few articles in the newspaper. We expect it will become a movement not just within the party, but also within society. In other words, we have to propose a comprehensive vision and plan for Taiwan. And using it, we can have a dialogue with intellectuals, social activists and laborers. This is where we can stand up again: only by clearly telling our society about the DPP’s policy positions, and communicating directly with the people. By thus encouraging each other and growing

together, we can make the rethinking of Taiwan’s future become a national movement and have sufficient energy to save Taiwanese society which is in danger. This year we will co-host a “2009 Taiwan Civil National Affairs Conference” with civic groups to integrate public opinion on national affairs; we will have small-scale seminars with intellectuals and professionals to discuss what Taiwan should do next; we will hold a “National Unemployment Conference” to integrate the voices of the unemployed and urge the government to ensure their rights; we will enthusiastically visit intellectuals and professionals and ask them to stand up to safeguard our homeland; we will actively visit towns and villages to explain what the DPP’s next policy proposals and positions are; we will take to the streets with civic groups to present our discontentment with the government. This is the future of the party. In 2009, if we don’t move forward, we will lose the support of the Taiwanese people. My dear Taiwanese, we are members of a party that has always been surprising. When others thought there was no hope for us, we survived; when others thought we would never develop from our roots, we always managed to find a way. We will continue to progress. I believe that the next time the Taiwanese grant us the opportunity to rule, we will do a better job!

DPP Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen Returns from a Successful Relationship-Building Trip to Manila
Dr. Ing-wen Tsai led a delegation that visited Manila January 17-18, 2009 to engage in a dialogue with the DPP’s sister-party in Manila, the Liberal Party of the Philippines (LP) and the Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats (CALD), as well as to meet with the Taiwanese community in Manila. The delegation included Mr. Wen-tsang Cheng, the DPP spokesperson, Mr. Fa-hui Shen, director of the DPP Department of Social Development and Ms. Hsieng-hwei Chang.

Attending Taiwanese Compatriot Association in Philippine General Assembly
The delegation also attended Taiwanese Compatriot Association in Philippine General Assembly attended by more than 400 Taiwanese oversea compatriots. Dr. Tsai was invited to speak about Taiwan’s democratic development in the meeting. She presented the concept of “Democracy 1, 2, 3”:
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terminate 1-party dominance, push for 2nd-time democratic reform and complete the 3rd-time peaceful transfer of political power. Dr. Tsai also stated that Taiwan’s democracy is still in transition. Taiwan needs a meaningful and strong opposition party to balance the KMT, which dominates both legislative and executive branches; otherwise, “we may see a danger of roll-backs in Taiwan’s democracy: either returning to the old authoritarian regime or becoming Singapore’s model of democracy”. She emphasized that the DPP cannot effectively ensure by itself that the KMT will not take advantage of its majority power. By establishing a platform to coordinate different voices as well as initiate an intra-party dialogue, the DPP will become a unified party that at the same time appreciates diverse voices and values.

Dr. Tsai also initiated a fundraising activity, which was well supported by those in attendance, during the meeting. “Through fundraising activities, the distance between the DPP and the people is lessened. The number of people who contribute donations is much more important than the amount donated from each person. We would rather see more people making small contributions than very few people offering a big donation”, she said.
(From left to right: Dr. Tsai Ing-wen, Mr. Hung Chichuan, former Commissioner of Overseas Compatriot Affairs Commission and Mr. Hsieh, Shih-Ying, Commissioner of OCAC and President of Taiwanese Compatriot Association in Philippine)

Meeting with LP Philippines and CALD
Among those who welcomed the delegation at the joint offices of CALD and FNF were Hon. Jun Abaya, MP, secretary general of LP, Hon. Dina Abad, a former Member of Parliament and current chair of the CALD Women’s Caucus, Mr. Chito Gascon, Esq., director general of LP, Mr. Lambert Ramirez, executive director of the National Institute for Policy Studies, Ms. Argee Gallardo, deputy director for administration, Dr. Neric Acosta, secretary general of CALD, Mr. Paolo Zamora and Mr.Carlo Religioso, program officers of CALD, Mr. Siegfried Herzog, the resident representative of Friedrich Naumann Foundation (FNF) Manila Office and Mr. Narwin Espiritu, the web developer of FNF-Manila.

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(From left to right: From left-right: Mr. Shen Fa-Hui, Mr. Cheng Wen-Tsang, Hon. Dina Abad, Mr. Siegfried Herzog, Hon. Jun Abaya, MP, Dr. Ing-wen Tsai, Dr. Neric Acosta, Ms. Hsieng-hwei Chang, Mr. Chito Gascon and Mr. Lambert Ramirez)

Dr. Tsai was thankful for the warm welcome the delegation received, as well as for the valuable information gained from the presentations and dialogue. According to her, she now has a deeper understanding and appreciation of the Philippines and the history of the LP’s struggle for democracy. Dr. Tsai is convinced that democracy in action is significant and vital. She realized that the LP and DPP have been witness to the same difficult path endured by their founders, as they had to make sacrifices for the sake of freedom. She also said that relations between the Philippines and Taiwan should be seen as more than just about trade and business. “Economic gains may not be sustainable without democracy,” she further added. In closing, she reconfirmed the commitment to building a stronger and sustained partnership between the DPP and the LP through CALD in order to promote and advance the partnerships of liberals in the region and to safeguard democracy and human rights in Asia. The DPP and LP are founding member-parties of CALD. Since CALD’s inauguration in 1993, both the DPP and LP have twice presided over the CALD leadership. The DPP chaired the organization in 1995 and 2004, while the LP led CALD in 1997 and 2007.

Taiwan human rights updates (Part 2)

Dr. Tsai Ing-wen Receives A Delegation From Freedom House and Expresses Her Concern Over Freedom Of Speech, Freedom Of Assembly And Political Freedom In Taiwan
Freedom House held the global release of their flagship publication, Freedom in the World, on January 13, 2009 in Taipei, an event hosted by the Taiwan Foundation for Democracy (TFD). This is the first time that Freedom House has launched such a report in Asia. Dr. Tsai Ing-wen received the Freedom House delegation, which consisted of Mr. Christopher Walker, Director of Studies of Freedom House, Professor Bridget Welsh of Johns Hopkins
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University and Ms. Sarah Cook, Freedom House Asia Researcher, at the DPP headquarters a day before the event. Dr. Tsai first expressed her admiration for Freedom House’s long-term efforts to research and monitor countries’ practice of democracy, political freedom and human rights worldwide. She said “Freedom in the World” has been recognized internationally as a very credible monitoring report and has a significant impact on global democratization. She also expressed her appreciation for Freedom House’s support as well as its concerns for Taiwan’s recent developments. While the Ma administration has boasted about “stabilization and progress” in relations between Taiwan and China, and in the

process labeled protesters and demonstrators as “troublemakers”, Freedom House expressed its concerns over Taiwan’s human rights and political freedom crisis that was hiding behind this “success.” Concerns over the “Assembly and Parade Act” (集會遊行法)” Dr. Tsai briefed the delegation about the current situation by placing special emphasis on an independent judicial system, free media and freedom of assembly. Since on the following day (January 13, 2009) the Legislative Yuan was going to review the amendment on the “Assembly and Parade Act” (集會遊行法), she pointed out that the DPP does not oppose amending the Act but believes that a democratic government should provide maximum protection for freedom of speech and freedom of assembly. However, the current amendment proposed by the Executive Yuan was even more restrictive than the current law. “The amendment restricts people more than it protects them. This is not acceptable to the DPP and numerous civic groups”, she said. She explained that the three major problems in the amendment are: (1) the “obligatory report” requirement that gives the government an excuse to intervene in every rally and assembly; (2) the “restricted area” clause has been removed from the amendment, but new measures, such as a “line of control” and “safe distance,” have been included; and (3) though criminal offenses have been removed from the amendment, more administrative penalties have been added, which will further affect the people’s freedom of assembly.

(From left to right: Ms. Amy Hsieh, Dr. Lin Wen-cheng, Vice President of Taiwan Foundation for Democracy, Dr. Mr. Christopher Walker, Director of Studies of the Freedom House, Dr. Tsai, Ing-wen, Ms. Sarah Cook, Asia Researcher of Freedom House and Professor Bridget Welsh, Academic Advisor of Freedom House and Johns Hopkins University Professor)

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“Taiwan Citizen Conference on National Affairs”(Part 1):

What Is “Taiwan Citizen Conference on National Affairs” & Why We Need It?

Why is the “Taiwan Citizen Conference on National Affairs” necessary? Since President Ma Ying-jeou took office in May, his government has carried out many policies that have resulted in the erosion of the nation’s sovereignty, economy, democracy and human rights, all of which have turned the Taiwanese people’s high expectations towards Ma Ying-jeou’s administration to deep disappointment and anxiety. Despite growing frustration and anxiety among the people, the KMT government, seemingly reverting to its authoritarian past, has refused to listen to public opinion. Taiwan now faces its most serious challenge in decades.

Thus, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU) have decided to co-sponsor the “Taiwan Citizen Conference on National Affairs” to provide the public with a chance to voice their opinions.

What is the purpose of the “Taiwan Citizen Conference on National Affairs”? The objectives of the conference are to: 1. Propose a basic direction for Taiwan’s society and offer a blueprint for the next five to ten years in the nation’s development. 2; Apply pressure on the government by ensuring that the concerns and wishes of the public are broadcast through every possible medium. 3. Institute immediate action by promoting those practical issues that reach a consensus within the conference - in particular for those which would help disadvantaged groups.

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Who will be invited? Everyone who cares about the future direction of Taiwan. We will invite researchers and academics from think tanks and universities, lawmakers and representatives of political parties, experts and activists in various fields, as well as government officials and policy advisors from Ma administration to join in the discussion.

How will it proceed? There are two main parts in the conference agenda: I. “Current Financial and Economic Situations in Taiwan and the Impacts on Social Security” (1) Three “town meetings”, served as preparatory meetings, will be held in Kaohsiung (January 16), Taichung (February 6), and Taipei (February 13). The objective is to gather inputs and ideas from the public through brainstorming and panel discussion. (2) Conference schedule: Time: February 21 and 22, 2009 Venue: Howard International House (30, Xinsheng S. Rd., Sec. 3, Taipei) II. “Social Reform and Reconstruction of National System” (1) Town meeting schedule: (tba) (2) Conference schedule: Time: Mid-March, 2009 (tba) Venue: (tba)
(For more information, please refer to the DPP website: http://www.dpp.org.tw/)

2009 Local Election in Taiwan~ Part 1

“Three-in-One” Local Election Coming Up at the End of 2009!
What is the “Three-in-One” local election? The "Three-in-One Election" is an election of county magistrates, county council members, and township governors for twenty-one counties and ‘province-administered’ cities in Taiwan (not including the ‘centrally-administered’ cities of Taipei and Kaohsiung). How is the DPP nominating its candidates this year? Candidates are normally nominated based on the DPP party platform, which dictates that the candidates participate in a party primary election. But this year, the 13th DPP National Party Congress, the highest decision-making body of the DPP, resolved to unify the party and best utilize the limited resources and person power available. They reached this decision on July 20th, 2008. Instead of

competing in a party primary, the nominations would be undertaken through cooperation and negotiation. The National Party Congress thus authorized the Central Executive Committee to set up a special task
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force responsible for the nomination of 2009 county magistrates and mayors for ‘province-administered’ cities candidates. Leading the special task-force is Jia-Chyuarn Su (蘇嘉全), a former member of parliament and former Minister of Interior Affairs. Who has been nominated so far? Yunlin County: Su, Ji-feng (蘇治芬) (current Yunlin magistrate) Pingtung County: Tsao, Chi-hung (曹啟鴻) (current Pingtung magistrate) Yi-Lan County: Lin, Tsong-Shyan (林聰賢) (current Lo-Tung town governor) Hsin-chu County: Perng, Shaw-jiin (彭紹瑾) (former Member of Parliament) Keelung City: Lin, Yu-Chang (林右昌) (member, the DPP Central Executive Committee) Taichung City: Lin, Jia-long (林佳龍) (former deputy secretary-general to the President) Taitung County, Liu, Chou-hao (劉櫂豪) (former Judge, Tai-tung District Court and former Deputy Magistrate of Taitung County) Chia-Yi County, Tu, Shing-Che (涂醒哲) (Member of Parliament, National Policy Advisor of Presidential office and Director General, Department of Health, Executive Yuan) Tai-Nan City: Lai, Ching-Te (賴清德) (Member of Parliament) Kaohsiung County: Lin, Tai-Hua (林岱樺) (former Member of Parliament) Penghu County: Tsai Chien-hsing (蔡見興) (former spokesperson of Kaohsiung City Council)
(For more information, please refer to the DPP website: http://www.dpp.org.tw/)

Statement in Response to Hu Jintao's 'Six-Points' Proposition
(DPP Department of International Affairs)
“Taiwan is an independent, sovereign state whose sovereignty belongs to the twenty-three million Taiwanese people. Taiwan’s future has to be decided by the Taiwanese”- this is not only the DPP’s position, but also the position held by a majority of Taiwanese society. China has to understand and respect the fact that, in a democratic country, no one has the right to ask people to relinquish their freedom of expression. We feel that the biggest problem between Taiwan and China right now is not how the DPP is acting but how the Taiwanese people perceive China. China consistently flaunts the success of its Taiwan policy, yet this policy is based solely on military threat, diplomatic blockade, economic exploitation and all kinds of political intimidation. China continually attempts to ‘internalize’ the cross-strait issue, which downgrades Taiwan to yet another region of China and transforms Taiwan into another Hong Kong or Macau. China’s intentional ignorance of the true feelings of the Taiwanese has made true harmonization between the two sides impossible.
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The DPP thus calls for an open and honest dialogue between the two sides. If China were sincere enough to communicate with the DPP, then it should not require the DPP to change its position. The DPP truly believes that a real dialogue can begin only without this precondition.

The DPP’s Response to the Charter 08 Crisis: The Ma Government Should Voice Taiwan’s Support to China “Charter 08” Activists
In response to the circumstances of the signers of China Charter 08 being interrogated or detained by the Chinese police, the DPP has issued the following public statement to show our solidarity with the Charter 08 activists: 1. To celebrate the 60-year anniversary of the 1948 U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights, a group of Chinese intellectuals, including Chinese scholar Liu Xiaobo, issued an open letter, “Charter 08”, calling for democracy and protection of human rights in China. Based on the value of democracy and our concern with the global democracy movement, the DPP would like to express its support for “Charter 08” and our sincere desire for China to move towards democratic reform. 2. The DPP is aware that the leaders of the campaign, including Liu and human rights lawyer Zheng Enchong, have been threatened or detained by the Chinese police or intelligence office, and their current situation remains unknown. We would like to express our solidarity with those democracy activists and to protest the Chinese government’s blatant suppression of human rights. 3. We would like to stress that democracy and human rights are universal values, and it is our goal to promote these values on a daily basis. During Taiwan’s tumultuous democratization process, we gained much-appreciated attention and support from the international democratic community. Today, we feel Taiwan has the responsibility and obligation to provide its support for democratic development in China. However, we are disappointed in the lack of a response from our current government to the suppression by Chinese officials of the rights of the Charter 08 leaders. 4. The DPP has never opposed the normalization of relations between Taiwan and China. However, the DPP must stand firm in its insistence on the principles of sovereignty, democracy and human rights. President Ma, since his inauguration, has sacrificed too much in exchange for uncertain and unequal economic benefits. His behavior has angered Taiwan’s public, as they believe Taiwan’s sovereignty, democratic values, and human rights principles are slowly disappearing. Besides turning a blind eye to the plight of the Charter 08 leaders, President Ma has also remained mute in support of the memory of the 1989 Tiananmen Square protest. Yet he managed to find his voice and refuse the Dalai Lama’s request to visit Taiwan. These behaviors not only cause doubts and fears to arise from the international democratic community, but also discourage the efforts of democracy and human rights activists in China. We would like to
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express our strong dissent concerning the actions of President Ma, and urgently demand that he condemn the actions of the Chinese officials responsible for the human rights crimes committed against the leaders of Charter 08.

In Response to the KMT-CCP Forum: DPP Calls for Supervision of the Legislature and Citizen Participation
In a speech concerning the 4th Cross Strait Economic and Cultural Forum (KMT-CCP Forum) given at a Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) policy symposium, Dr. Tsai Ing-wen stated Ma Ying-jeou’s announcement that the policy of “effective management had become history” was a cause of worry. The DPP administration’s policy of effective management was a risk management measure and not an act of self-isolation. The Ma administration’s wholesale opening up to China without instituting any defensive or risk management controls will cause great harm to the Taiwanese economy. Dr. Tsai also brought up other points of concern:
1.

Damage to Taiwan’s democracy and government accountability – The KMT-CCP platform has taken the lead in establishing the cross-strait agenda and turning it over to the Ma government to execute. However, the direction of the nation must be decided by its people, and the people’s choices must be carried out through democratic processes. The Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) actions have seriously eroded the authority of government institutions and turned Taiwan’s democratically elected government into a puppet of a single political party. This greatly harms Taiwan’s democratic system as well as the faith and trust that the public holds for the government. We do not wish for Taiwan to return to the party-state of the past which is exactly what the situation is in China. Taiwan is a democratic and progressive country. Why should we regress into the same state as China?

2. Lack of transparency – The topics under negotiation at the KMT-CCP forum involve important national issues dealing with the economy, transportation, and national security. However, the negotiation process lacks transparency and supervision by the legislature. Cross-strait talks should never become like backroom negotiations. Ma Ying-jeou should clearly explain to the Taiwanese people what the channels and content of discussions are. The KMT, which has been leading the process, has its own commercial and political interests, but it has not taken any measures to avoid conflicts of interests. We are worried that the KMT will lead Taiwan down a road of no return. 3. The government wields too much power over the administration of cross strait issues while the legislative supervisory mechanisms are too weak and inadequate. On July 16, 1992, the Legislature passed the “Act Governing Relations between Peoples of the Taiwan
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Area and the Mainland Area” (Cross Strait Relations Act) which is one of the most important laws that provides the framework for interactions between Taiwan and China. This law covers everything from contractual agreements between governments to contacts between private organizations to personal issues such as marriages and inheritance. However, Dr. Tsai pointed out that this law is seriously deficient in setting up legislative supervisory mechanisms for cross strait affairs. The text of the law only briefly mentions that any cross strait agreements which involve writing or revising laws must be evaluated by the Legislature. Everything else is just sent to the Legislature for reference. The law also is clearly deficient in the area of legislative supervision of cross strait agreements. For example, it does not specify whether the Legislature has the authority to amend agreements. The law does not specify how amendments would affect the agreement’s validity or execution. Such an enormous amount of power given to the executive is a cause for concern in Taiwan where the ruling party has an inordinate amount of power. 4. Dr. Tsai stated that Ma Ying-jeou’s view of the DPP’s “effective management” policy as ideological in nature is a serious mistake. This shows that the Ma administration has completely no regard for the small and medium-size enterprises and traditional manufacturing companies that have been hurt by the establishment of direct links. He has ignored the threats of higher unemployment faced by the people. He has also neglected the importance of a national economic defense mechanism in the face of the globalization of economic activity. When the DPP was in power, it performed an “Evaluation of the Influence of Cross Strait Direct Air Links” which provided a comprehensive examination of the opportunities and risks of direct links. However, the Ma administration has only parroted the part about the “opportunities” and remained silent on the “risks.” In contrast to the KMT’s risky cross strait policy, the DPP cares about how the direct links have caused traditional manufacturers to relocate abroad or downsize, the dumping of agricultural products from China, how agricultural products can compete with low-priced products from China, the closing or idling of factories and the accompanying unemployment, and how to control the spread of diseases. However, no matter how loud our voices are, the government has not proposed a single economy security plan or precautionary measure. The Ma administration only cares about the “winners” of the direct links and ignores the disadvantaged “losers.” Consequently, Dr. Tsai stated that the DPP will always be helping the public to understand the problems present in the policymaking and overall defensive mechanisms for cross strait affairs. The DPP will be launching two important social movements. The first will call for the immediate revision of the Cross Strait Relations Act so that the Legislature retracts the outsized authority given to government departments. Dr. Tsai said, “The writing of that law occurred in a specific historical context, but we have already entered a new era. Cross strait political and economic interactions are much more complex now
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and a diverse set of opinions exist in a democratic society. There, Legislature must provide a strong check and balance against the executive. The Legislature, which is made up of different political parties, should be a tangible and effective check against the executive.” For the second social movement, the DPP hopes that the people will retract the authority they have given to the executive and legislative organs in the area of cross strait issues. There should be room for the people to exercise direct authority over the carrying out of cross strait policy. Therefore, the DPP will propose an amendment to the Referendum Law that will give the public the authority to express their opinion towards cross strait issues instead of just turning it over to representative groups to handle.

The Risks and Effects of Signing a Financial MOU
Dr. Tsai stated that the signing of a financial supervisory memorandum of understanding (MOU) is a neutral issue. Whether it benefits or harms Taiwan depends on three things: 1. Whether there is sovereign equality, 2. Whether there is adequate risk management, and 3. What the overall economic benefits are. 1. Sovereign equality: If Taiwan is forced to sign something like a Closer Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA), this would seriously harm Taiwan’s sovereignty. We strongly demand that the KMT not sacrifice our sovereignty and dignity in order to reach an agreement. 2. Risk management: If Taiwan does not establish precautionary measures when opening itself up to mutual establishment of bank branches, it will face the following risks. The Financial Supervisory Commission has also failed to explain whether it will institute any protective mechanisms: a. Allowing Taiwanese banks to set up branches in China: If ten banks in Taiwan decide to establish five branches in China, they will need to transfer $NT50 billion over as operating capital. If the Chinese government depreciates their currency, this will lead to a liquidity crisis that will force the Taiwanese bank headquarters to transfer more funds to sustain their branches in China. When a problem occurs between Taiwan and China, Chinese account holders will most likely seek to withdraw their funds which would affect the bank’s liquidity and result in a systemic crisis for Taiwan. b. Allowing Chinese banks to set up branches in Taiwan: Chinese bank branches in Taiwan will be able to have access to personal, commercial, and relational data from the Joint Credit Information Center (JCIC). The financial condition of Taiwanese businessmen will also be exposed. Under a situation in which hostility still exists in the political cross-strait situation, this is undeniably a serious security hole through which confidential information may be obtained. China’s primary ambition in signing an MOU is to obtain JCIC data. Has the Ma administration been aware of this? 3. Evaluation of Economic Interests: There are actually limited economic benefits for liberalizing financial exchanges. The government should not make exaggerations:
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a. When Wang Chien-shien was Finance Minister, he approved too many applications to set up banks which led to the overly competitive nature of today’s banking market in Taiwan where interest rates have remained low for a long period. This is the reason why many banks wish to set up branches in China at this time. b. However, if one combined all 37 banks in Taiwan into a single bank, its size would still be smaller than the Bank of China, China’s fourth-largest bank. China also places all sorts of restrictions on foreign banks which would most likely limit any gains that Taiwanese banks would have from setting up operations in China. c. The government should think through whether obtaining these benefits is worth the cost. In consideration of the risks and benefits, has the government come up with any precautionary measures to manage risk?

Highlights of 2008 DPP Public Survey Results (DPP Survey Center)
Period between the Parliamentary Election and President Ma’s Inauguration: Nearly 60% of respondents were satisfied with the results of the Legislative Yuan elections; however, nearly 50% of those polled were worried that the KMT, which won the majority of the seats, may abuse its majority power and funnel benefits to limited groups of people. Approval Rate for the President and the Cabinet 1. The approval rate for President Ma Ying-jeou has been sharply declining since he took office in May. Before his inauguration, his approval rate topped off at 70%. After his second month in office, however, it dropped to approximately 50%. By August, it had fallen to well below 40%, and dipped to under 30% in the following month of September. 2. Women have formed the majority of support for President Ma (the approval rate among women was nearly 80% during his second week as president); however, after the third month of his tenure, 60% of women said they were not satisfied with President Ma’s performance. 3. The approval rate for Premier Liu Chao-shiuan is slightly lower than President Ma’s, but has declined in a similar manner consistent to that of the President’s. 4. The approval rate for members of the cabinet has also experienced fluctuations. When Premier Liu first came to the office, Minister of Foreign Affairs Francisco Ou (歐鴻鍊) and Minister of Defense Chen Chao-min (陳肇敏) were the least popular members of the cabinet; however, Economics Minister Yiin Chii-Ming (尹啟銘) and Finance Minister Lee Sush-der have since replaced them as the two least popular members of the cabinet.
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5.

The approval rate for the Cabinet has dropped sharply. On average, 60% of respondents (by September, this number reached well over 80%) said they would like to see the cabinet reformed and members re-shuffled.

Economic issues 1. When President Ma first came to office in May, about 50% of respondents said that they had confidence in the government’s ability to stabilize the consumer prices. After Ma’s first month in office, though, 63% said they were not satisfied with the government’s performance. 2. When the government first proposed its “Strengthen Regional Constructions, Expand Domestic Demand” program to the public, only 40% of the public supported the program while 53% of respondents preferred a direct tax return. 3. More than 60% of respondents did not believe President Ma would be able to achieve his “6-3-3” (6 percent annual economic growth, per capita GDP of US$30,000 and unemployment of less than 3 percent) campaign promise. 4. 71% of respondents said their property and assets have depreciated under Ma’s administration, while 65% felt the standard of living has declined. 5. Approximately 70% of respondents felt pessimistic about their personal economic situation for next year. 6. About 4,000,000 of the employed population have been affected by negative economic shock, as seen in a decrease in salary and unpaid leave but an increase in unpaid working hours. Cross-strait issues and sovereignty issues 1. 67% of respondents said they cannot accept President Ma’s statement that Taiwan’s relations with China is a “non-state-to-state relationship” 2. 3. 51% of respondents opposed Ma’s “diplomatic truce” with China 66% of respondents thought the Ma government will lead Taiwan toward the direction of unification with China 4. 51% of respondents worried that President Ma will not be able to safeguard Taiwan’s sovereignty when negotiating with China. 5. The general reception of the Taiwanese public towards China is negative: 58% think China is hostile to Taiwan, 85% think China is autocratic, and 75% think China is “black-hearted.” 6. 56% of respondents thought the KMT-CPP Forum not appropriate and 76% of respondents felt the ruling party should consult and reach a consensus with the opposition party before
- 15 Please note that articles in this publication should not be used as direct quotation unless with the explicit permission from the editor.

initiating negotiations with the Chinese government. 7. 84% of respondents think that when agreements or treaties are made by the two sides, they should be ratified by the Legislative Yuan or a referendum. 8. 47% of respondents thought improving relations between Taiwan and China will be beneficial to Taiwan’s economy while 49% disagreed. 9. 55% of respondents said that the Presidential Office’s response to the opposition party’s invitation to a debate on sovereignty and cross-strait policy by saying “people have made their choice in the presidential election, so there is no need for further debates on this issue” was not appropriate. 10. 54% of respondents thought President Ma has sacrificed too much to China. 11. 44% of respondents said they trust President Ma on handling cross-strait affairs, while 50% said they do not trust President Ma. Chinese envoy’s visit to Taiwan in November 2008 1. 52% of respondents thought the safety measures adopted by the police during Chen’s visit were not appropriate. 2. 76% of respondents agreed that the police should not have prohibited any demonstrations or protests so long as they were conducted in a peaceful manner.

- 16 Please note that articles in this publication should not be used as direct quotation unless with the explicit permission from the editor.