China to Send Buying Teams to Taiwan

A plan of action to speed up exchanges

As the two sides join hands to tackle the financial crisis, China will send three business delegations to Taiwan to buy machinery and other goods, the government said May 20.

The first team will be mainly composed of representatives from home appliance, food processing and other light industrial firms.

The move is to "speed up cross-strait trade exchanges and work together to deal with the financial crisis," Yao said.

The first mission is scheduled to visit the island later this month, with the other two to be dispatched in the middle of June and early July, commerce ministry spokesman Yao Jian said. He did not reveal how much the delegations were planning to spend or how many Chinese companies would be involved in the initiative.

Relations between China and Taiwan have warmed since Taiwan's China-friendly President Ma Ying-jeou took office in 2008, with the two sides signing agreements that have led to regular direct flights, increased investment opportunities and a tourist boom.

China has already sent buying missions to Europe and the U.S. this year. The trips netted more than $29 billion in deals, according to Chinese and foreign media reports.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2009

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