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BOCHK: ECFA to have positive impacts on regional economic integration

HONG KONG, July 23 (Xinhua) -- The newly signed Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement, or the ECFA, fitting the current trend of regional economic integration, would have positive impacts on the future economic integration among Chinese mainland, Taiwan and Hong Kong, or even East Asia, according to a report released by Bank of China (Hong Kong) limited (BOCHK) late Thursday.

In addition to the expansion of trade and investment, the ECFA would also add impetus to the strengthening of the role of Chinese mainland, Taiwan and Hong Kong in the global supply chain and foster the shift of the cross-strait economic cooperation mode, said BOCHK in its latest issue of Economic Review.

The report said the landmark trade pact, signed by Chinese mainland and Taiwan, would help foster the shift of the export- oriented nature of cross-strait economic and trade cooperation to a more balanced one, serving both domestic and external demands, as well as accelerating industrial restructuring and upgrade in the region.

Besides, the agreement, which slashes tariffs on hundreds of categories of goods traded across the Strait, is believed to serve as Taiwan's "admission ticket" in Asia's regional cooperation, favorable for Taiwan to maintain its export competitiveness.

The report suggested that Chinese mainland, Taiwan and Hong Kong should further strengthen its internal cooperation through creating new institutional arrangements to accelerate economic integration.

It is also suggested that Hong Kong and Taiwan should conduct feasibility studies for various kinds of cooperation.

The ECFA was signed on June 29 in China's southwestern municipality of Chongqing, signifying that cross-strait economic relations entered a new development stage of institutionalized cooperation.

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