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Taiwan actively seeks bilateral free trade agreements, though it is hampered in this effort by its status vis-a-vis China. It has FTAs already with Panama (2003), Guatemala (2005), Nicaragua (2006), El Salvador (2007) and Honduras (2007). It is negotiating with Dominican Republic and Paraguay. And it hopes to negotiate further deals with Costa Rica, Israel, Swaziland, Japan, the US of course, Korea, New Zealand, Singapore and Mexico. Taipei’s emphasis on Central American countries as FTA partners is to gain access to the US market under NAFTA and CAFTA. But now Taiwan is in talks with China for a possible FTA following the signing of the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) between the two governments in 2010.

last update: May 2012
Photo: simonwai/CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Presidential office defends ECFA plan
The Presidential Office yesterday hit back at critics — including former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝) — who said on Saturday that an economic cooperation framework agreement (ECFA) the government is seeking to sign with Beijing this year will undermine Taiwan’s competitiveness.
Ma wants FTA with Japan
Taiwan’s President Ma Ying-jeou on Thursday expressed his wish to strike a free trade agreement with Japan
Lai: Taiwan is free from China factor over FTAs
Lai Hsingyuan, minister of Mainland Affairs Counsel, noted surprisingly yesterday that ECFA and FTA with other countries are totally different things, and she hadn’t noticed any disturbance from China over the last 20 months.
500 items on ECFA "Early Harvest" list
The government has earmarked close to five hundred items for inclusion on an "Early Harvest" list in an economic agreement with China, according to Economics Minister Shih Yen-shiang on Wednesday.
Ma contradicts himself on bilateral trade deals
President Ma Ying-jeou yesterday contradicted himself when talking about bilateral trade agreements. While he said bilateral negotiations would put Taiwan in an unfavorable position, his administration is making strenuous efforts to sign an economic cooperation framework agreement (ECFA) with Beijing.
Experts call pacts ‘window dressing’
The four agreements signed by Taipei and Beijing last November were nothing but “window dressing,” experts attending a cross-strait forum said yesterday, urging the government to pressure Beijing to quit blocking other countries from signing free-trade agreements (FTA) with Taiwan as both sides mull an economic pact.
Taiwan looks to enhance trade with EU
A free trade agreement expected to be inked soon between South Korea and the European Union threatens to leave Taiwan at a disadvantage in expanding trade with Europe, but the government hopes potential trade enhancement measures will offset the blow.
Ma calls for fresh talks on FTA with Singapore
President Ma Ying-jeou says he expects Taiwan to sign a free-trade agreement (FTA) with Singapore.
MAC does not expect pact on investments from PRC
Taipei and Beijing may not sign an agreement on investment from China in local businesses during their upcoming high-level talks, but will in any case issue a joint statement on the issue, the Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) said yesterday.
Taiwan pursuing free trade pacts with ASEAN states
Taiwan is pushing for bilateral free trade agreements with individual Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) members as a more feasible way for the country to participate in regional economic integration