In November 2008, Center for Asia-Pacific Area Studies (CAPAS), Academia Sinica, Taiwan, the ASEAN Studies Centre (ASe, Institute of Southeast Asian Studies (ISEAS), Singapore, and the Taiwan Institute of Economic Research (TIER) organized a symposium in Taipei on ASEAN-Taiwan economic relations. The symposium concluded that while a free trade agreement between Taiwan and ASEAN was not, for political reasons, possible at the moment, Taiwan businesses could take part in the ASEAN regional integration process. Involvement in ASEAN production chain would give Taiwanese enterprises access to other markets - Australia, New Zealand, India, Japan, etc. The symposium also concluded that to strengthen ASEAN-Taiwan relations, a Taiwan-ASEAN business council could be formed among Taiwanese companies doing business in ASEAN. However, ASEAN needed to provide the appropriate environment including schools and medical facilities for Taiwanese investors and managers. Information on ASEAN countries and doing business in them should be readily available, especially in Chinese, as many Taiwanese investors had limited grasp of the English language.
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