China, Taiwan ruling parties to talk next month

Other News Materials 24 November 2008 15:03 (UTC +04:00)

China's Communists and Taiwan's ruling party, putting years of distrust between the two sides aside, will meet next month to discuss investment and financial cooperation, a party official said on Monday.

Taiwan's Nationalist Party (KMT) will meet on December 13-14 with a Communist delegation in Shanghai, KMT China affairs director Chang Jung-kung said, to prepare for an early 2009 round of government-to-government talks, which resumed in June after a decade-long gap marked by military threats, reported Reuters.

"Negotiations between the two sides have been very smooth and there's a lot of work we've got to do," Chang told Reuters.

China has claimed self-ruled Taiwan since 1949, when Mao Zedong's forces won the Chinese civil war and Chiang Kai-shek's KMT fled to the island. Beijing has vowed to bring Taiwan under its rule, by force if necessary.

But relations have improved since China-friendly Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou took office in May.

The two governments agreed earlier this month to cooperate financially as global economic problems worsen. The party-to-party talks will lay the groundwork for further formal dialogue, Chang said.