Fri, Jan 02, 2015 - Page 1 News List

Several new policies take effect as new year begins

By Shelley Shan  /  Staff reporter

Several new policies took effect on the first day of the year, ranging from labor rules to tax schemes and food safety.

Starting yesterday, workers can be granted a compensatory holiday if their routine holidays during the week happen to be national holidays.

Meanwhile, the labor insurance rate rose from 9.5 percent to 10 percent, affecting more than 10 million workers.

On average, the premium each worker has to pay per month is to increase by NT$19 to NT$44.

Employers across the nation are to collectively increase copayments by NT$8.27 billion (US$260.95 million).

Consequently, labor insurance revenue is set to increase by NT$15 billion.

Currently, the monthly premium for labor insurance is jointly paid by workers (20 percent), employers (70 percent) and the government (10 percent).

Employment rules requiring the fulfillment of job responsibilities can no longer be applied to people working in beauty salons, advertising agencies and 12 other job categories in which workers are not able to leave the workplace until they complete the day’s work.

According to the Ministry of Labor, workers in these 14 categories must adhere to the eight-hour schedule defined by the Labor Standards Act (勞動基準法).

Approximately 70,000 workers are estimated to be affected by the new policy.

With tax reforms to enter the second phase this year, people with net annual income exceeding NT$10 million will have to pay more tax, with the rate increasing from 40 percent to 45 percent. The new policy applies to more than 9,000 households.

In addition, married couples can choose to file taxes on non-salary income separately and the total amount of deductibles for personal income tax is to be raised from NT$11,000 to NT$22,000.

To enhance food safety, the nation is set to implement a good manufacturing practice (GMP) system by which food firms must certify all of the products used in the manufacturing process to qualify as a GMP manufacturer. They must also register the names of their suppliers.

Also starting this year, supermarkets must place all alcoholic beverages in a specific section. Advertisements for alcohol must also include warnings such as: “Don’t drink and drive.”

The amount of cash that travelers entering or leaving Taiwan can carry has been raised from NT$60,000 to NT$100,000.

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