嚴震生/台灣給中國最惠國待遇?

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名人堂電子報
2016/11/02 第1049期 | 訂閱/退訂 | 看歷史報份
 

名人觀點

嚴震生/台灣給中國最惠國待遇?
聯合報/嚴震生
首先要聲明,原標題應是「中華民國給中華人民共和國最惠國待遇?」但它超過標題字數限制,因此縮為目前標題。無論是哪一個標題,都會讓人有「兩國論」聯想,在此特別澄清,個人並不認為「兩國論」是目前兩岸冷和時所應討論的議題,若我討論「兩國論」,一定是達成以色列和巴勒斯坦和平的兩國方案。

最惠國待遇是我在中學時學到,有關鴉片戰爭後清朝與英國簽訂《南京條約》的內容。當時一知半解,只記得這是中國對外簽訂的第一個不平等條約,英國從此享有領事裁判權(extraterritoriality)和最惠國待遇(most favored nation status)。讀大學後才弄清楚,《南京條約》並不能算是不平等條約,它的續約—《虎門條約》或《中英五口通商稅則章程》,才是不平等條約,但其中的領事裁判權和最惠國待遇,原本也非不平等條款,只是英國當時片面(unilaterally)享有這樣的權利,卻沒有讓中國能夠得到互惠(reciprocity)。

蔡英文政府宣布要讓陸生納入健保之際,最惠國待遇概念,一直出現在我的腦海。原因無它,因為廿年前,美國政治及外交最重要的一個議題,即是否要給予中國大陸永久最惠國待遇。美國在一九三○年代首次給予包括中華民國在內貿易夥伴最惠國待遇,中華人民共和國成立之初還享有這待遇,不過當中共進入西藏後,就被取消;直到兩國在一九七九年「關係正常化」,才在次年恢復。

這項待遇每三年要重新檢討,其中的豁免條款,除非國會通過決議反對,否則將自動生效。一九八○年代,最惠國待遇持續維持,讓中國廉價出口到美國的商品,能享有與其它國家同樣關稅。不過,天安門事件後,國會幾乎每年都會以人權為由,考慮是否要繼續給予。柯林頓在競選總統時,曾嚴厲批判老布希不應當讓中國享此待遇,但就任後卻支持維持這項貿易關係。最終,在二○○一年布希總統任內,中國大陸獲「永久正常貿易關係」待遇,而最惠國待遇爭議也走入歷史。

我不厭其煩地將這段歷史說明,乃是在辯論最惠國待遇時,許多美國民眾對這概念有所誤解,認為它是對中國的一項優惠待遇(preferential treatment),孰不知這個名詞是類似矛盾修辭(oxymoron)概念。最惠國待遇,事實上是不歧視(non-discrimination)待遇的意思,也就是說如果美國對其它國家的商品,課以同樣關稅,中國不應當被歧視,而被課較高稅率。換句話說,中國大陸僅是享有與其它國家同等待遇,並沒有獲得特別優惠。

民進黨過去對陸生納入健保及降低陸配取得台灣身分時間的反對立場,絕對是一種差別待遇,或是歧視行為。如今執政後政策大轉彎,願意將陸生納入健保,與其他外籍生無異,相當符合最惠國待遇的精神。既然如此,何不將陸配取得台灣身分的時間,由目前六年降到與其它外配同樣的四年呢?(作者為政治大學國際關係研究中心美歐所研究員)

可愛指數破表!幾米陪你一同搭觀光巴士
《星空》曾被改編成電影,當時也曾在宜蘭取景。幾米廣場上等車的男孩女孩則是最受歡迎的裝置。「星空號」巴士呼應宜蘭幾米文化廊帶的主題,公車承載著旅行的想像跟愉悅的心情,飛上天空。

一百趴的誘與惑
半個世紀前,政府體恤軍公教退休人員,提供了十八趴優存;今天這些軍公教生活改善了,十八趴卻被打成落水狗!今天政府為了協助低收入戶脫貧提供了一百趴,該怎麼解讀呢?

 

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