Cross-strait energy ties high on agenda

PUBLISHED : Friday, 29 August, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 29 August, 2008, 12:00am

The mainland and Taiwan may open discussions on joint oil and gas exploration when their top negotiators meet in October, a Taiwanese newspaper reported yesterday.

The United Daily News reported that energy co-operation would be an issue at the top of the agenda when Chiang Pin-kung, head of Taiwan's Straits Exchange Foundation, and Chen Yunlin , chairman of the mainland's Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait, met.

The report said the two sides could sign agreements on joint exploration in areas including the Taiwan Strait, potential oil and gas fields near the disputed Diaoyu Islands, and even overseas.

According to the report, the Chinese Petroleum Corporation, Taiwan, would open a representative office later in Beijing, and mainland oil companies Sinopec and CNOOC would consider similar moves in Taiwan.

The report did not mention specifics, but it is expected that the meeting will be held in Taipei.