Sat, Feb 15, 2014 - Page 12 News List

This Week in Taiwan’s History

By Tang Hsiang-yi  /  Staff reporter with CNA

Diplomacy

Taiwan severs ties with France, Columbia

1964: Taiwan recalls its envoy from France on Feb. 10 after the European nation severs ties and switches diplomatic recognition to Beijing. French-speaking former colonies — Central African Republic, The French Congo (covering what is today parts of the Republic of the Congo, Gabon and the Central African Republic) and (the Republic of) Senegal — follow France’s example and establish ties with Beijing over the next two years. France establishes the French Institute in Taipei (now called the French Office in Taipei) in 1980. The institute assumes non-diplomatic functions, such as promoting trade interests and cultural exchanges.

1980: Taiwan terminates diplomatic ties with Colombia on Feb. 10 after the South American country switches diplomatic recognition to China.

Economy

Taiwan stock market inaugurates

1962: The Taiwan Stock Exchange Corp (TWSE, 台灣證券交易所) begins operations on Feb. 9 with shares of 18 firms listed by the end of the year. Ten years before establishing the stock market, the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) government under martial law implements the land-to-the-tiller program, which encourages landholders to sell their land in exchange for bonds and shares of state-owned enterprises. However, no formal stock or bond market existed at the time. To facilitate such trading, the government founded the Securities and Exchange Commission (證券管理委員會) a year before TWSE.

2004: On Feb. 12, TWSE’s turnover surges to NT$203.1 billion in a single-day session, marking one of its best-ever performances. As of the end of last year, the TWSE has 809 listed companies with a combined market capitalization of NT$24.5 trillion.

Politics

Chen changes names, Ma indicted

2007: In an effort to de-Sinicize state-owned enterprises, then-president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) implements a name-changing policy: Chinese Petroleum Corp (CPC, 中國石油) becomes CPC Corp Taiwan (台灣中油) and China Shipbuilding Corp (中國造船) to Taiwan International Shipbuilding Corp (台灣國際造船) on Feb. 9. Chunghwa Post Co (中華郵政) is changed to Taiwan Post Co (台灣郵政) on Feb. 12. After Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) won the presidential election the following year, his administration changes Taiwan Post back to its former title, reflecting a return to a China-centered policy.

2007: Ma is indicted on Feb. 13 for misusing public funds. Shortly after the indictment, Ma resigns as chairman of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT). He’s later found not guilty.

Obituary

Acclaimed publisher dies

2000: Liu Shao-tang (劉紹唐), publisher of the Chinese-language monthly Biographical Literature (傳記文學), dies of lung cancer on Feb. 10 at the age of 80. Liu founded the magazine in 1962 with the aim to preserve Republican-era historical materials and promote biographical literature. The magazine, which continues to print, contains autobiographies, chronologies, memoirs, diaries and manuscripts of writers and commentary on history books — all well received by historians and average readers alike.

Weather

Temperature dips

1958: Ground-level temperatures hit a record low for the past century: 2.6 degrees Celsius in Taipei on Feb. 13 — significantly lower than Taipei’s lowest temperature last month: 10.3 degrees Celsius.

Sports

Golfer Yani Tseng ranked number one

2011: An extremely fruitful year for golfer Yani Tseng (曾雅妮), who takes over the No. 1 ranking in Women’s World Golf Rankings on Feb. 13, wins the LPGA Championship and becomes the youngest player to win four LPGA majors.

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