A definition of one China came out after negotiators from the two sides met in Hong Kong in 1992 and reached a non-written agreement that “there is only one China with each side of the Strait defining the term as it sees fit”. This became known as the “1992 Consensus”. It was not very precise for either side.
China’s slogan described the end result after negotiations: a single state of China that had two economic systems. China was concerned with the substance of the outcome, not so much the form of the negotiations. It was offering a compromise that went beyond the Hong Kong formula for a “high degree of autonomy”.
Taiwan’s response was to promote the idea of two political entities which were focused on the preconditions and form of the negotiating process. It was concerned more with positioning itself well so it could achieve a higher level of autonomy. Taiwan has been more concerned with form and process than substance and nearly all the rhetoric has resulted in delay.
Strait Talk, Chapter Five: The Issues
People's Republic of China
The 1992 Consensus embodies the one-China principle and defines the fundamental nature of cross-Straits relations; it thus holds the key to the peaceful development of relations between the two sides of the Taiwan Straits. Recognize the historical fact of the 1992 Consensus and that the two sides both belong to one China, and then our two sides can conduct dialogue to address through discussion the concerns of the people of both sides, and no political party or group in Taiwan will have any difficulty conducting exchanges with the mainland.
President Xi Jinping
"Secure a Decisive Victory in Building a Moderately Prosperous Society in All Respects and Strive for the Great Success ofSocialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era"
Delivered at the 19th National Congress
Communist Party of China
October 18, 2017
Xi Jinping Administration (2012 - )
Hu Jintao Administration (2002 - 2012)
Yang Shangkun Administration (1988-1993)
At this working-level consultation in Hong Kong, SEF representatives suggested that each side use respective verbal announcements to state the one China principle. On November 3rd, SEF sent a letter to ARATS, formally notifying that "each side will make respective statements through verbal announcements." ARATS fully respects and accepts SEF's suggestion.
- People's Daily, PRC, November 6, 1992
Republic of China (ROC Taiwan)
Tsai Ing-wen Administration (2016 - )
In 1992, the two institutions representing each side across the Strait (SEF & ARATS), through communication and negotiations, arrived at various joint acknowledgements and understandings. It was done in a spirit of mutual understanding and a political attitude of seeking common ground while setting aside differences. I respect this historical fact.
- DPP duty-bound to build bridge to China: ex-KMT official, Focus Taiwan News Channel (September 24, 2017)
- KMT lays out vision for peaceful development of cross-strait ties, Focus Taiwan News Channel (August 20, 2017)
- KMT prioritizes cross-strait peace, stability in draft policy platform, Focus Taiwan News Channel (August 09, 2017)
- MAC urges Beijing not to stop students from studying in Taiwan, Focus Taiwan News Channel (August 05, 2017)
- Majority favors maintaining cross-strait status quo: survey, Focus Taiwan News Channel (June 20, 2017)
- 2 Taiwanese confirmed arrested in China for alleged telecom fraud, Focus Taiwan News Channel (June 11, 2017)
- Chinese visitors to Taiwan fall 50.2%, Focus Taiwan News Channel (May 04, 2017)
- Maintaining status quo remains top choice for Taiwanese: survey, Focus Taiwan News Channel (April 21, 2017)
- KMT chair says 'ROC' in Nanjing, The China Post (November 01, 2016)
- Interview: Former Minister unravels ‘1992 consensus’ mystery, Taipei Times (October 31, 2016)
- MAC Issues Statement on SEF Letter, Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) Press Release (September 09, 2016)
- MAC vows to improve government-to-government dialogue with Beijing, Focus Taiwan News Channel (August 11, 2016)
- MAC appeals to Beijing to recognize Taiwan's good will, The China Post (July 25, 2016)
- Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen: Beijing Must Respect Our Democratic Will, The Washington Post (July 21, 2016)
- Inaugural address of ROC 14th-term President Tsai Ing-wen, Office of the President Republic of China (Taiwan) (May 20, 2016)
Ma Ying-jeou Administration (2008-2016)
In our interpretation, the 1992 consensus does not involve two Chinas, one China and one Taiwan, or Taiwan independence.
Former President Ma Ying-jeou
"Ma: Taiwan to solidify '1992 consensus' to pursue cross-strait peace"
Focus Taiwan News Channel
- Xi knows unification is futile now: Ma, Taipei Times (March 27, 2016)
- Taiwan wants China to face reality of separate rules since 1949, Focus Taiwan News Channel (March 24, 2016)
- China acknowledgement helps ties: Ma, Taipei Times (February 28, 2016)
- DPP's Tsai seeks to maintain status quo in cross-strait ties, Focus Taiwan News Channel (January 09, 2016)
- U.S. urges China to remain flexible in cross-strait ties, Taipei Times (2016)
- Eight Years of Reform Create a Better Taiwan, Focus Taiwan News Channel (January 01, 2016)
- Ma Reaffirms Commitment to the 1992 Consensus, Taiwan Today (April 30, 2015)
- MAC: 1992 Consensus - The Key to Cross-Strait Peace and Prosperity, Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) Promotional Material (July 2015)
- MAC: 1992 Consensus of One China, with Respective Interpretations Fully Highlights ROC Sovereignty and Taiwan Dignity, Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) Press Release (November 09, 2015)
- MAC reaffirms commitment to 1992 consensus, Taiwan Today (August 17, 2015)
- When I said 'Mr. Xi': Ma Ying Jeou, USA Today (November 22, 2015)
- Ma, Xi agree on upholding '1992 consensus': official (2015)
- Ma: Taiwan to solidify '1992 consensus' to pursue cross-strait peace (2015)
- Ma: The 1992 Consensus: ensuring cross-strait peace and prosperity (2015)
- President Ma's remarks at ROC (Taiwan)-US-Japan Trilateral Security Dialogue (2015)
- Mainland Should Face Realities Across the Strait, Respect the Choice, Rights and Interests of the People of Taiwan, and Pragmatically Promote the Development of Cross-Strait Relations (March 13, 2015)
- Two Sides Jointly Reaffirm That the "1992 Consensus" Is the Key to the Peaceful Development of Cross-Strait Relations and Should Be Jointly Consolidated and Cherished at "Siew-Xi Meeting (November 09, 2014)
- Upholding the Principle of "Shelving Disputes and Jointly Creating a Win-win Outcome" and Working Together for the Happiness of the People on Both Sides, Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) (March 14, 2013)
- Both Sides of the Strait to Continue Efforts in Bettering People’s Well-being on a Foundation of Peace and Stability, Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) (February 25, 2013)
- ROC Leader's Representative Vincent Siew Urges at "Siew-Xi Meeting" for Two Sides to Strengthen Mutual Trust and Create a Sustainable and People-Centered Vision for Cross-Strait Relations, Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) Press Release (October 06, 2013)
- Chang Hsien-yao: Benign Cross-Strait Interactions are Beneficial to Deepening Mutual Trust and Jointly Creating a Win-Win Outcome, Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) Press Release (August 18, 2013)
- Chang Hsien-yao: Keys to Stable Cross-Strait Development are to Base Dialogue on the "1992 Consensus of One China with Respective Interpretations" and Promote Institutionalized Negotiation, Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) News Release (August 17, 2013)
- President Ma delivers address at symposium on "1992 Consensus", Office of the President Republic of China (Taiwan) (November 09, 2012)
- Hu, Xi call for efforts to promote peaceful development of cross-Strait ties in response to message sent by Ma, People's Daily Online (November 15, 2012)
- MAC: Promoting institutionalized cross-strait negotiations and maintaining peaceful and stable development across the Taiwan Strait on the foundation of the "1992 Consensus of one China with respective interpretations" corresponds to the expectations of mainstream public opinion in Taiwan, Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) News Release (December 14, 2012)
- Speech by Minister Wang at the SEF 20th Anniversary of the "1992 Consensus", Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) (November 09, 2012)
- Maintaining peaceful and stable development of cross-strait relations is in the best interests of both sides, Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) Press Release (November 08, 2012)
- The ROC government's steady promotion of developments in cross-strait relations and the breadth of vision and mind of President Ma's Mainland policy are the keys to peace in the Taiwan Strait, Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) (September 05, 2012)
Chen Shui-bian Administration (2000-2008)
Lee Teng-hui Administration (1988-2000)
Peking has agreed to a Taipei proposal that both sides "orally state" their respective "one China" principle in the process of joining efforts to pursue national unification, they have different understandings about the substance of "one China.
- Central News Agency, Taiwan, November 18, 1992