Taiwanese financial institutes boycott mainland financial forum

Diplomatic row leads to government financial executives cancelling attendance at cross-strait meeting

Taiwanese financial institutes boycott mainland financial forum

Insurance News

By Gabriel Olano

The executives of several Taiwanese government financial institutions did not attend a financial forum in mainland China following Panama’s decision to switch diplomatic recognition from Taipei to Beijing.

Due to Panama’s shift of allegiances on Tuesday last week, the representatives of the Taiwan Financial Services Roundtable (TFSR), under instruction of the Taiwanese government, did not attend a cross-strait financial forum held in Xiamen, China on Sunday.

Among the officials that did not show up to the forum were: Kuei Hsien-nung, chairman of Taiwan Insurance Institute, Shih Jun-ji, TFSR board chairman and Taiwan Stock Exchange chairman, and Wu Tang-chieh, FSR board chairman and Taiwan Stock Exchange chairman.

Despite the withdrawal of the government officials, a Taiwanese contingent still attended the forum, but it was mostly composed of private financial institutions’ representatives.

The TSFR is an organization established in 2005 under the wing of the Financial Supervisory Commission. TSFR was one of the sponsors of the financial forum, alongside Beijing-based Financial News, the government of Xiamen City, and the Taiwan Affairs Office’s economic bureau.

Political analysts believe that Panama’s about-face is part of mainland China’s efforts to pressure Taiwan since President Tsai Ing-wen took office in May 2016. Cross-strait relations have become colder during the Tsai administration.

The financial sectors of both sides planned to use the Xiamen forum as an avenue to improve on the relations between the two economies, but the efforts seem to have been unsuccessful due to the latest geopolitical developments.

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