BEIJING -- Chinese political advisors have called for accelerated efforts to build a "cross-strait economic zone" covering Taiwan and the mainland's coastal provinces, which they said would become a new engine of growth for the Chinese mainland and Taiwan.
Sources at the Central Committee of the Revolutionary Committee of the Chinese Kuomingtang (RCCK) said the proposal would be submitted to the Second Session of the 11th National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), which is due to open here Tuesday afternoon.
The proposed economic zone would cover the southern part of Zhejiang Province, eastern Guangdong, central and eastern Jiangxi, and the entire Fujian Province and Taiwan.
Such an economic zone was in line with the trend of economic globalization and regional integration, and was made possible by the warming ties across the Taiwan Straits, according to the RCCK sources. RCCK is one of the eight non-Communist parties in China.
According to the proposal, the economic zone would fuel the economic development in Taiwan and the mainland's coastal regions, and become another engine of economic growth, just as other major economic zones in China such as the Yangtze River Delta, the Zhujiang River Delta, the Beibu Bay and the Bohai Rim Economic Zones.
The RCCK proposed that the "cross-Straits economic zone" should enter the national economic development plan as a major strategy.
It proposed both two sides on the Taiwan Straits to promote economic cooperation and division of labor through dialogues, and to set up inter-city links between Wenzhou, Fuzhou, Xiamen, Quanzhou and Shantou on the mainland, with Taiwan's Taipei, Kaohsiung, Taichung, and Tainan, in the pursuit of mutual benefits and development.
The RCCK also called for stepped-up support to the economic zone on the western side of the Taiwan Straits, which included the coastal cities of Xiamen, Zhangzhou, Quanzhou and Fuzhou on the mainland, by offering more favorable policies and funding, and speeding up traffic infrastructure construction.
According to the Ministry of Commerce, the trade volume between the mainland and Taiwan in the first 11 months of 2008 reached $122 billion, an 8.4 percent rise year-on-year.