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  • Taiwan says trade ties with Japan unaffected by territorial row

    Taipei, Sept. 11 (CNA) Taiwan and Japan will continue their economic cooperation despite the new friction that has developed in a territorial dispute, Economics Minister Shih Yen-shiang said Tuesday.

    "Industrial cooperation between Taiwan and Japan will not be hampered by the dispute since such collaboration is beneficial to industries on both sides," Shih told reporters.

    None of the initiatives in progress have been affected, he added.

    Shih disclosed that Taiwan and Japan are working out details of a memorandum of understanding on economic cooperation to advance bilateral economic ties.

    Without elaborating on the content of the MOU, the minister said it will benefit the industrial sectors of both sides in the long term.

    The minister's remarks came after Taiwan's government filed a strong protest against Japan's decision to nationalize the Tiaoyutai Islands earlier in the day. The uninhabited Tiaoyutai island chain is controlled by Japan but is also claimed by Taiwan and China.

    The Japanese government bought three of the five Tiaoyutai Islands from private owners at cost of 2.05 billion Japanese yen (US$26 million) Tuesday and signed a contract with the owners to cement the deal, according to Japanese media.

    The Tiaoyutai Islands, called the Senkakus in Japan and the Diaoyu Islands in China, lie about 100 nautical miles northeast of Taiwan.

    On the ongoing negotiations for Taiwan's Hon Hai Group, the world's largest contract electronics maker, to acquire a stake in Japan-based Sharp Corp., Shih said the companies each have their own opinions and need time to work out the deal.

    (By James Lee and Scullly Hsiao)
    ENDITEM /pc