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Ma Ying-jeou closes out National Conference on Economy and Trade
Taiwan News, Staff Writer
2014-07-28 04:00 PM
The National Conference on the Economy and Trade drew to a close Monday with an address by President Ma Ying-jeou. Ma implored attendees at the event to take an active role in Taiwan’s future, saying, "I strongly hope that everyone in the community will study these life-and-death problems facing Taiwan in the areas of trade and the economy. The government and people of Taiwan must adapt a positive attitude and put aside their differences to jointly work out feasible solutions." Ma stressed that the situation is very serious and Taiwan has a limited range of options. This means that people must stop fighting each other and stop wasting time. “We are all in the same boat,” said Ma, “and we must focus on finding a way out for ourselves and for Taiwan.”

The national conference was an event organized by the Executive Yuan in response to requests by the leaders of the sunflowers student movement in March. On the third and final day of the conference Monday security was tightened for Ma’s speech. Members of the Democratic Alliance, the Green Citizens Action Coalition and other activist groups were present outside the conference venue during Sunday’s events, and everyone entering the Taipei International Convention Center (TICC) on Monday had to pass through metal detectors and show inspectors their belongings to gain entry.

Ma pointed out that in an international environment where competition is becoming ever more fierce, no one can afford to stop seeking to make progress. Anyone who stops moving forward, said Ma, will soon be eliminated. He noted that he was not being alarmist but rather merely describing the facts. He stressed that the public must concentrate on supporting and promoting progress rather than offering resistance. This means that nation-wide issues need to be addressed and everyone needs to work together to strengthen the nation’s competitiveness in trade. He added that the observations made during the three-day national conference will be incorporated in government policy as part of a response by the government to the 318 student movement as well as the needs of the people.

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