Negotiations under the U.S.-Taiwan Initiative on 21st-Century Trade are continuing to move ahead and Taiwanese officials are reportedly pushing to complete an agreement by the end of 2023.

The two sides launched the initiative in June 2022  after the U.S. left Taiwan out of the Indo-Pacific Economic Partnership due to concerns about how its inclusion might be received in China. In August officials announced a negotiating mandate envisioning high-standard commitments and economically meaningful outcomes in areas such as trade facilitation, good regulatory practices, small and medium-sized enterprises, agriculture, standards, digital trade, labor and environment, state-owned enterprises, and non-market policies and practices.

Following two days of what the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative calls “productive conceptual discussions” in New York City last November, a negotiating round held Jan. 14-17 in Taipei saw officials exchange views on proposed texts covering trade facilitation, anti-corruption, small and medium-sized enterprises, good regulatory practices, and services domestic regulation. USTR said officials also “reached consensus in a number of areas” and pledged to “maintain an ambitious negotiating schedule in the months ahead,” though no further details were given on what those areas were or when the next talks might be held.

The U.S. is pursuing the initiative with Taiwan amid continued tensions with China, which it identified as its top competitor in a recent national security strategy. The U.S. has also started restricting exports to China of high-tech items that could contribute to its military modernization.

For more information on U.S. trade negotiations and how your company could benefit, please contact Nicole Bivens Collinson at (202) 730-4956 or via email.

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