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Koo Chen-fu

In office
1990 – 2005
Preceded by none (new title)
Succeeded by Chang Chun-hsiung

Born January 6, 1917(1917-01-06)
Taichung, Taiwan, Empire of Japan
Died January 3, 2005 (aged 87)
Taipei, Taiwan, Republic of China
Nationality ROC (Taiwan)
This is a Chinese name; the family name is Koo.

Koo Chen-fu (Chinese: 辜振甫pinyin: Gū ZhènfǔWade-Giles: Ku1 Chen4-fu3, 6 January 1917 - 3 January 2005), was a Taiwanese businessman and diplomat. He led the Koos Group of companies from 1940 until his death. As a chairman of the Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF), Koo arranged the first direct talks between Taiwan and China since 1949 and served as Taiwan's negotiator in both the 1993 and 1998 meetings (so-called Wang-Koo talks).


Born in northern Taiwan into a wealthy family, Koo attended Taihoku Imperial University (now National Taiwan University) as Taiwan's former President Lee Teng-hui did. He inherited a substantial fortune and a business when his father Koo Hsien-jung died in 1937 while Koo was only a sophomore. Koo graduated in 1940. He also pursued a graduate degree in Japan.

Koo was jailed in 1946 for 19 months on treason charges for helping the Japanese. After his release, he took refuge in Hong Kong and only returned to Taiwan in 1949 to marry his wife, Cecilia Koo. He focused on running Koos Group as well as on his political career that led to his elevation to the politburo of Kuomintang.

Koo became chairman of the Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF) in 1991. On 16 December 1991, a little over ten months after the establishment of the SEF, the authorities of People's Republic of China (PRC) set up the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits (ARATS), with Wang Daohan as its chairman. The following year Koo and Wang held preliminary talks in Hong Kong that resulted in the so-called "1992 Consensus" and facilitated negotiations of practical matters. However, the content and the existence of this "1992 consensus" is still widely disputed. In 2001, Koo publicly affirmed that the meeting did not result in a consensus on the issue of "one-China." In April 1993, Koo and Wang met in Singapore to hold the first formal discussions between Taipei and Beijing since 1949. The two met again in Shanghai in 1998. On 18 October 1998, Koo met PRC President Jiang Zemin in Beijing, in what was then the highest-level talks yet held between the two sides. The talks were called off by Beijing in 1999 after ROC President Lee Teng-hui proposed his two-states theory.

Koo Chen-fu died of renal cancer on the morning of 3 January 2005. He was 87.

External links

Political offices
New title President of the Straits Exchange Foundation
Succeeded by
Chang Chun-hsiung


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