Fri, Dec 20, 2002 - Page 4 News List

Protest staged by farmers, fishermen deemed top story

CNA , TAIPEI

The Nov. 23 protest march staged in Taipei by some 100,000 farmers and fishermen, sparked by outrage over the government's plans for managing the credit departments of farmers' and fishermen's associations, has been chosen by the editorial chiefs of local news media as the top domestic news story of the year.

The newsmen also listed what they believe to be the other major news events or issues as follows:

A China Airlines Boeing 747-200 passenger plane en route from Taipei to Hong Kong crashed into the Taiwan Strait near the Penghu Islands on May 25, killing all 206 passengers and 19 crew.

Taipei Mayor Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) and Kaohsiung Mayor Frank Hsieh (謝長廷) both won re-election on Dec. 7.

Taiwan became a member of the WTO on Jan. 1, resulting in all trade practices being conducted under the WTO framework.

A WTO-mandated liquor tax led to a drastic price hike for rice wine and sparked a surge in production of bootleg liquor that caused several deaths.

A serious drought in northern Taiwan in the first half of this year exposed serious water-resources management problems.

President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) defined cross-Taiwan Strait relations as "one country on each side" in a teleconference speech to the annual conference of the World Federation of Taiwanese Associations in Tokyo onAug. 3.

The Cabinet announced in early November that it would agree in principle to allow charter flights between Taipei and Shanghai with a stopover in a third place to provide convenience for Taiwanese businessmen returning from China during the Lunar New Year holidays.

The raising of national health insurance premiums from Sept. 1 caused much discontent among civic organizations and unions.

First lady Wu Shu-chen (吳淑珍) was awarded the Democratic Service Medal on Sept. 25 by the National Endowment for Democracy, an organization partially funded by the US Congress, during a visit to Capitol Hill.

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