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Mainland arbitration agencies to hire staff from Taiwan
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Twenty-one arbitration agencies on the Chinese mainland plan to recruit Taiwan professionals as arbitrators, according to a mainland official in Beijing Wednesday.

Mainland arbitration agencies are encouraged to hire and better train arbitrators from Taiwan to smooth the work and promote the exchange and cooperation across the Taiwan Strait, said Zhang Wanming, deputy director of the law and regulation bureau under the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council, at a regular press conference.

Since 1998, he said, 16 arbitration agencies on the mainland had employed 48 arbitrators from Taiwan. They have handled more than 1,000 cases involving Taiwan people on real estate projects, construction, joint venture and trade.

They are professionals such as lawyers, accountants and law experts who are very familiar with laws and business on both sides of the Strait, he said.

As an effective and cost-effective way to resolve business disputes, arbitration has been more popular with Taiwan businessmen on the mainland.

More Taiwan residents are interested in working for the mainland arbitration agencies, Zhang said. "We believe that this will benefit the exchanges across the Strait and better protect the legal rights and interests of people from both sides."

To work for a mainland arbitration agency, a Taiwan resident needs to have eight years of experience working for arbitration agencies, as a lawyer or judge, as a senior researcher or law professor or have expertise in the law and trade.

Besides, the mainland will better explain its arbitration laws and regulations to Taiwan businessmen and improve the service, Zhang said.

Mainland welcomes Taiwan people to contribute songs for Olympics

Also during the press conference on Wednesday, Li Weiyi, spokesman of the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council said that the Chinese mainland welcomed people on the Taiwan Island to contribute songs for the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.

The campaign to collect songs for the Games, which started four years ago, involves not only the mainland people but also people in Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao, as well as overseas Chinese and foreigners, said Li.

"We welcome music professionals and amateurs in Taiwan to take an active part in the campaign," he said.

Singers from the mainland, Hong Kong and Taiwan started shooting music videos of the first dozen Olympic songs in November in Beijing.

In August, 133 singers from the mainland, Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan recorded the chorus "We Are Ready" to start the one-year countdown to the Olympics.

(Xinhua News Agency December 27, 2007)

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