WTO brings China and Taiwan to bargaining table – David Lague

From the International Herald Tribune (link)

When Lai Shin-yuan, a Taiwan lawmaker, learned last year that a group of towel manufacturers from one of the poorest counties on the island planned to take action under World Trade Organization rules to stem a flood of cheap imports from China, she knew it was an opportunity too good to miss.

Not only could she help protect livelihoods at risk; the outspoken Taiwan Solidarity Union legislator also saw a rare chance to bring China and Taiwan together as equals.

As a top security and trade adviser to Taiwan’s pro-independence president, Chen Shui-bian, before she was elected to Parliament in December 2004, Lai had battled, with limited success, to open channels of communication with the mainland while Beijing remained determined to shun any official contact with the island.

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