Ron MacIntosh is a former diplomat whose career focused largely on Asia Pacific, notably on trade and economic issues. His postings included Tokyo, Seoul and as head of mission in Taipei (2006-2009). He was an early leader in developing Canada’s economic and commercial approaches to China following the Deng Xiaoping “opening”. Later, he helped to frame Canada’s involvement in Pacific institutions and to help chart Canada’s emerging markets strategy.
Since late 2011, as a Senior Fellow with the China Institute, Mr. MacIntosh has supported the training of today’s diplomats on China, penned two energy strategy documents for Alberta Energy, is a frequent commentator on trade and investment policy, and assisted with six Canada-China investment policy forums. Mr. MacIntosh has also been a lead contributor to other provincial China research projects in Alberta and Newfoundland and Labrador.
The 2016 election of President Tsai Ing-wen of the Progressive Party (DPP) in Taiwan has led to new tensions across the strait and halted talks on further rapprochements. Mr. MacIntosh’s presentation outlined the challenges of engaging Taiwan while expanding Canada’s links with China. Must this be a zero-sum game as Beijing and Taipei advocates occasionally seem to prefer? After examining recent cross-straits trends, he looked at this conundrum.