TAIPEI, (CNA).- Former President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) said Wednesday that if Taiwan wants to maintain the status quo across the Taiwan Strait, it cannot reject the "1992 consensus," which allows each side their own interpretation of "one China."
Ma was speaking at a symposium on cross-strait relations, on the third anniversary of his historic meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) in Singapore Nov. 7, 2015.
He noted that at the Singapore meeting, the first between leaders of Taiwan and China since 1949, they jointly endorsed the "1992 consensus."
The consensus is a tacit agreement reached between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait in 1992, when Taiwan was governed by a Kuomintang administration, that there is only one China and each side is free to interpret what that means.
Ma said his meeting with Xi achieved several important positive results, including an explicit endorsement of the consensus by the two leaders for the first time since it was reached 23 years ago and recognizing it as the common political foundation for advancing the development of cross-strait ties.
The meeting helped build a bridge of peace across the strait and establish a new model for the leaders on both sides to engage in face-to-face dialogue on an equal basis, Ma said.
However, if the current Democratic Progressive Party administration does not accept the "1992 consensus," it would mean Taiwan's unilateral abolition of the consensus, which could lead to the loss of mutual trust between the two sides, he said.
As a result, cross-strait relations could deteriorate, official interactions between the two sides could be halted completely and Taiwan could suffer adverse effects on the economic, political and diplomatic fronts, Ma said.
He said the "1992 consensus" is vital to the development of cross-strait ties and if the government does not recognize the consensus, the status quo is not likely to be maintained.
(By Lee Shu-hua and Evelyn Kao)