Taiwan’s Opposition DPP Issues China Policy Report

DPP Chang.jpg
 (DPP Chair Su Tseng-chang/VOA)

by David Parmer

Taiwan’s opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) issued its 2014 China Policy Review on January 9. The DPP’s  China Affairs Department released the document with a forward by DPP chair SuTseng-cheng. Those looking for hints of change in policy or emphasis will have to look elsewhere-the DPP remains staunch in its fundamental principles and is unequivocal in its assertions.

The DPP, which was founded in 1986, and is Taiwan’s first opposition party, is known for its strong human rights stance, its concern with social welfare, its belief in the importance of relations with the U.S., Japan and Europe, and its unwavering commitment to Taiwan independence.

The report covers four areas:

  • Political relations
  • Economic strategy
  • Freedom and human rights
  • National defense

The report echoes the party platform. A key point is that the people’s wishes are the main concern in cross strait relations. And the DPP report asserts:

“An examination of the positions and attitudes of the Taiwanese people towards China policy reveals that their national identity and preferences for independence versus unification have solidified.”

 This point is repeated throughout the document and is paired with the idea that cross-strait exchanges must not undermine Taiwan’s sovereignty and security. A call was also made for more transparency in cross strait relations as well as more emphasis on democracy, freedom and human rights.

 The report states that Taiwan faces three problems: globalization, regional economic integration and the economic rise of China. Mention is also made of the negative effects on the Taiwan economy caused by economic relations with China. And finally to ensure Taiwan’s continued security, the DPP report advocates increasing the defense budget.

 DPP 2014 China Policy Review: http://www.scribd.com/doc/198143800/DPP-2014-China-Policy-Review-Summary-Report