Cabinet: Taiwan Will Work To Gain Support For Its CPTPP Membership Bid
The government will continue to seek support from the member states of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) for Taiwan's own entry into the trade pact, Premier Su Tseng-chang said Saturday.
Photo Insert: The comments of Premier Su Tseng-chang came a day after the CPTPP held its first high-level meeting of the year on Friday to discuss the implementation of the trade pact.
Describing Taiwan's bid to join the CPTPP as a major government priority, Su said he had instructed the Cabinet to monitor "all the situations of the CPTPP member states" and engage with them in order to garner their support, Lai Yu-chen, Joy Tseng, and Teng Pei-ju reported for Central News Agency (CNA).
His comments came a day after the CPTPP held its first high-level meeting of the year on Friday to discuss the implementation of the trade pact, according to a readout released by Singapore's Ministry of Trade and Industry.
Without mentioning any prospective applicants by name, the readout said the meeting also "exchanged views on the accession applications from aspirant economies" while affirming "the need for aspirant economies to meet the high standards of the CPTPP."
The UK applied in February 2021 to join the Japan-led trade pact, and its accession process commenced about four months later in June. Both China and Taiwan submitted their applications the same year in September, followed by Ecuador in December.
Meanwhile, Roy Chun Lee, senior deputy CEO of the Taiwan WTO & RTA Center at the Chung-Hua Institution for Economic Research, viewed the readout issued by Singapore, which is the CPTPP chair for 2022, as a good sign for Taiwan.
Lee said it showed the CPTPP would seek to uphold its high standards of market access commitments when reviewing applications for CPTPP membership.
In this case, whether Taiwan gains entry to the trade pact would "depend on its own efforts" to meet those standards, Lee said, noting that the complexity of the cross-Taiwan Strait relations could still add uncertainty to Taiwan's CPTPP bid.
Any new entries to the bloc -- one of the biggest in the world with a common market of 500 million people and 13.5 percent of global trade -- will require the unanimous support of all 11 current members.