February 14, 2014
China, Taiwan Progress Will Take Time
WASHINGTON - China and Taiwan, at odds for more than six decades, have taken a symbolic step forward with the highest level talks since the end of China's civil war in 1949.
But significant reconciliation between the former bitter rivals is likely to move slowly and deliberately, according to political observers.
Taipei has embraced growing commercial and cultural ties with Beijing following Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou's election in 2008.
Beijing's long-term goal, to reunify Taiwan with the mainland, remains a tough sell across the strait, according to Alan Romberg of Washington's Stimson Center.
"If you ask the question 'do you want unification?' 70 to 80 percent of the [Taiwanese] people say 'no.' So, there's a lot of work to be done in order to move in that direction," Romberg said.