Wed, Oct 05, 2005 - Page 10 News List

Cabinet vows to continue its reforms

By Jackie Lin  /  STAFF REPORTER , WITH BLOOMBERG

The Cabinet said a resolution passed by the Legislative Yuan's Finance Committee to suspend the disposal of government holdings in financial institutions is not binding. It vowed to continue industry reforms.

Monday's motion was passed after Vice-Premier Wu Rong-i (吳榮義) failed to attend a meeting to explain the government's banking reforms, Cabinet spokesman Cho Jung-tai (卓榮泰) said in a telephone interview yesterday.

"If the resolution is reasonable and feasible, the Executive Yuan will respect it," Cho said. "But if it violates our policy, we'll see it just as a suggestion and reference."

The legislative motion came as no surprise to market watchers as it has been brewing for some time. Shirley Yang (楊慶祺), a fund manager who manages NT$1.2 billion at Invesco Taiwan Ltd (景順投信), said that the lawmaker's action would not have a big impact as the government's share-sale projects do not need their approval.

"Also, share swaps and transfers can be carried out skillfully," she said, adding that the government will push its reforms regardless of lawmakers' disagreements.

The motion was endorsed by only five opposition lawmakers.

The government plans to cut the number of 12 government-controlled banks by half by the end of the year and wants to cut by half the number of 14 local financial holding companies by the end of next year.

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