Taiwan's president, Tsai Ing-wen, refused to bow to Beijing's pressure when she delivered her first National Day speech Monday, but she called on China to value the positive results of cross-strait exchanges over the past 20 years and called for talks as soon as possible.

Evidently responding to mainland China's expressed desire for step-by-step progress toward a "final resolution" of political differences, Tsai called on Beijing "to face up to the reality that the Republic of China exists." Leaders on both sides, she said, "should jointly display wisdom and flexibility and together bring a divided present toward a win-win future."

Most of the speech was devoted to domestic issues, such as housing, the predicament of young people, providing a life of dignity for the elderly, transforming the economy and judicial reform.