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Mainland and Taiwan sign medical cooperation pact

12-21-2010 18:48 BJT Special Report:6th Cross-Strait Talks |

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Top negotiators from the mainland and Taiwan have signed a deal on medical cooperation. Our reporter Shen Le was at the signing ceremony and has this report from Taipei.

The signing of the medical cooperation agreement reflects improving ties between the two sides since Taiwan leader Ma Ying-jeou came to power in May 2008, and the two sides resumed routine high-level direct unofficial talks, adopting various measures to boost trade and tourism.

Chen Yunlin, ARATS President, said, "By the end of August, the trade volume between the mainland and Taiwan had risen greatly. Personnel exchanges between the two sides have increased greatly as over 4 million Taiwan residents visited the mainland and some 1.3 million mainland visited Taiwan."

Chen Yunlin (L, Front), president of Chinese mainland-based Association for
Relations Across the Taiwan Strait (ARATS) and Chiang Pin-kung (R, Front),
chairman of the Taiwan-based Strait Exchange Foundation (SEF), exchange gifts
after signing an agreement on cross-strait health cooperation in Taipei,
southeast China's Taiwan, Dec. 21, 2010. (Xinhua/Song Lidong)

The new medical agreement will help cross-strait exchanges of information on epidemics, and cooperation on the development of vaccines to counter any outbreak.

Chiang Ping-Kun, SEF Chairman, said, “The medical cooperation agreement signed at this round of cross-strait talks and other agreements signed before have become a safety net for cross-strait exchanges.”

The deal will also allow the two sides to work together on the clinical trial of new drugs, a step that Taiwan officials say will accelerate the entry of Taiwan products into the lucrative mainland market.

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