Taiwanese president ready to meet protesters over China trade pact

Reuters
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ROUGH CUT NO REPORTER NARRATION

Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou has invited the leaders of a student protest movement to his office in a bid to resolve a political standoff over a controversial trade deal with China. Students say they have accepted his offer although it's not yet clear when the meeting will happen.

For now, Taiwanese students continue their protest inside and outside the parliamentary building in Taipei they stormed a week ago. The are occupying it in protest over a trade agreement with mainland China that would open 80 of China's service sectors to Taiwan, and 64 Taiwanese sectors to China. Protesters want the government to scrap the bill.

Ma has said the trade agreement is necessary for Taiwan's economic future, but opponents say the deal could hurt small Taiwanese companies. Many are also worried the pact will allow China to expand its influence over a fiercely independent and proudly democratic territory that China still sees as a renegade provin

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