This year’s AmCham Taipei Doorknock delegation, led by Chairman Dan Silver and President Andrea Wu, stressed the importance – for both Taiwan and the U.S. – of Taiwan entering the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) when it expands beyond the original 12 members.
At some points dividing into teams, the group met with representatives from 48 different offices and organizations, calling on members of the U.S. Executive Branch, U.S. Congress, the Taiwan Representative, and others. (See the full list below)
- Although free-trade agreements have been the object of much criticism in the U.S. during this election year, the U.S. government remains committed to seeing the pact come into being. Progress is being made toward gaining broader U.S. industry support by resolving points of dissatisfaction that sectors such as pharmaceuticals and financial services have had with the TPP text.
- A Congressional vote on TPP in a year-end “lame duck” session is a strong possibility, though not a certainty. Otherwise the vote would need to be either early in the next presidential term or after the 2018 mid-term elections.
- Serious consideration of second-round TPP candidates will need to wait for the agreement’s entry into force. But Taiwan and Korea are being widely mentioned, along with the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, and Colombia.
- China is already making known its opposition to Taiwan entering into TPP. Taiwan therefore needs to take urgent steps to demonstrate its qualifications – beyond any doubt – by showing firm commitment to international standards and practices. It also needs to work on resolving outstanding major trade issues with all 12 TPP countries.
- Preparations are under way for the annual U.S.-Taiwan TIFA talks to be held in Washington in the second half of the year. The U.S. side emphasizes the importance of making concrete progress on the various issues that will be on the table.
- AmCham Taipei’s proposal for a second-generation Administrative Procedure Act met with enthusiastic support from many offices. There is appreciation that a single notification platform for proposed regulatory changes, ample time for the public to comment, and a mechanism for government agencies to respond would usher in a much more transparent and effective regulatory regime.
- The U.S. government has been increasingly engaging with Taiwan in a wide variety of spheres. As the U.S. moves to devote more attention to Asia and the Tsai administration seeks to diversify Taiwan’s trade and investment, there should be more and more opportunities for productive cooperation between Washington and Taipei.
U.S. Executive Branch
- National Security Council
- Department of State
- Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs
- Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs
- Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR)
- Department of Commerce – International Trade Administration
- Department of Health and Human Services
- American Institute in Taiwan/Washington
- Offices of 10 Senators and 15 Representatives
- House Ways and Means Committee staff
- Senate Foreign Relations Committee staff
- Congressional Research Service
- Asia Society Policy Institute
- Brookings Institution
- Council for Strategic and International Studies
- DPP Liaison in Washington
- Emergency Committee for American Trade (ECAT)
- National Foreign Trade Council
- Peterson Institute for International Economics
- Samuels International Associate
- U.S. Chamber of Commerce
- U.S.-Taiwan Business Council
- U.S. -Taiwan Business Forum
- U.S. Green Building Council
- Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office