Font-size: big middle smallCurrent Place: Headline

Cross-Strait economic pact produces fresh reciprocal effect


XIAMEN, June 12 (Xinhua) -- Tariff reductions for Taiwan products that were eligible for duty preferences under a cross-Strait economic pact reached 281 million yuan (about 43.23 million U.S. dollars) in the first five months of this year, a mainland customs official said Sunday.

By the end of May, 9,385 orders of products made in Taiwan, with a total value of 1.56 billion U.S. dollars, were approved by the mainland customs authorities for duty reductions under the "early harvest program" for commodity trade with the cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA), which became effective on Jan.1.

With the program, more than 500 products made in Taiwan have been promised tariff reductions on the mainland, as well as tariff exemptions for listed products, said Lu Peijun, deputy head of the General Administration of Customs.

Lu said during a conference at the weeklong Strait Forum, which is currently being held in Xiamen, a city in east China's Fujian Province facing Taiwan across the Taiwan Strait, that 4,741 orders of mainland-manufactured products shipped to Taiwan, worth 331 million U.S. dollars, enjoyed 46.41 million yuan in tariff reductions as of the end of May.

"Though implemented for less than half a year, the ECFA's 'early harvest program' has already produced initial positive result and turned out to be reciprocal to both sides of the Taiwan Strait," Lu said.

The mainland will add more Taiwan-made products to its duty exemption list, officials said earlier at the conference.

The mainland and Taiwan entered a tense era after the Kuomintang (KMT) lost a civil war with the Communist Party of China and fled to Taiwan in the late 1940s.

Relations between the two sides warmed up after the KMT, led by a new generation of leaders, returned to power in the 2008 Taiwan election, ending eight years of rule by pro-secession Chen Shui-bian of the Democratic Progressive Party.