Sun, Mar 01, 2009 - Page 20 News List

Premier says fans will see the birth of new baseball teams

STAFF WRITER, WITH CNA

The government will promote baseball by providing more incentives and encouragement to interested companies and public enterprises, Premier Liu Chao-shiuan said yesterday.

On a visit to the construction site of an international baseball stadium in Taoyuan County, Liu said baseball has always been the nation’s national sport and that in the future the government would provide incentives to encourage companies and military units to contribute to the sport’s growth.

Liu said the Sports Affairs Council has already developed a plan to stimulate development of the game, which includes offering companies, government organizations and military units incentives to help establish new baseball teams.

NEW TEAMS

“I’m happy that Taoyuan County is looking to establish a Taoyuan County aviation city baseball team,” Liu said, hoping that in the future local baseball fans would see the birth of even more new teams.

“With the cooperation of companies, government agencies and the military we expect to see the establishment of at least eight to 10 new teams in the near future,” Liu said.

AMATEUR OR PRO

Though Liu did not specify if the teams would compete at an amateur or professional level, he suggested that the creation of more teams would bring more fans to ballparks and add to the sport’s popularity.

Taoyuan County is currently building a new NT$980 million (US$28 million) baseball stadium on a 9.7-hectare plot close to Taiwan High Speed Rail’s Taoyuan Station.

Scheduled to be completed by the end of this year, the stadium will have 12,000 infield seats with room for the future construction of outfield stands.

After the stadium’s completion, Taoyuan County will be able to host national and international baseball tournaments.

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