■ United StatesCaucus sends Chen regards
With the approach of the third anniversary of President Chen Shui-bian's (陳水扁) May 20, 2000 inauguration, several US congressmen have extended their congratulations to him. The US Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC) recently sent a letter to Chen lauding his performance, which they claimed has won wide admiration in the world. The members of the CHC expressed appreciation for Chen's efforts to maintain peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait and expressed hope that other Asian countries will understand that peace in the Taiwan Strait is in the interests of the entire world. Taiwan has solid relations with the US and is its eighth-largest trading partner. It also supports the US anti-terrorism campaign, the letter said. The caucus was happy when Taiwan joined the WTO last year and is hoping that Taiwan can take part in the annual conference of World Health Assembly, the highest decision-making body of the World Health Organization, that starts on Monday in Geneva, it added.
Public TV up for award
Taiwan's Public Television Service will be one of three non-American media institutions honored at the 62nd Annual Awards Ceremony of the George Foster Peabody Awards tomorrow. Thirty-one programs will be cited for recognition based on the Peabody Board's only criterion -- excellence -- according to the organizer. Taiwan's PTS is being recognized for How High Is the Mountain, a portrayal of the power of family ties to overcome age, illness, geography and politics. PTS President Lee Yung-te (李永得) described the program as a touching record of a veteran's family in Taiwan which, after visiting the father's birthplace in China, realizes that their roots have been transplanted to Taiwan.
Chen visits wood-craft fair
President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) took part in the annual Sanyi Wood Carving Festival yesterday in Miaoli County and hailed the event that has turned Sanyi -- a Hakka township -- into a synonym for the wood-carvers craft in Taiwan. Praising the annual carving festival for transforming Sanyi from a rural backwater to a well-known tourist spot in central Taiwan, Chen also lauded the Sanyi cuisine and ceramics as features attractive enough to lure tourists. According to the president, Sanyi has found its own unique way after a deep soul-searching process. Chen called on the people of Taiwan to visit the festival -- one of the 12 major festivals promoted by the Ministry of Transportation and Communications -- to get to know Sanyi and experience the Hakka culture, although the spread of SARS has cast a shadow on everyday life.
Delegation postpones trip
A delegation aimed at recruiting high-tech talent from overseas has postponed its visit from June to September because of fears over SARS. Despite the postponement, the Hsinchu Science-based Industrial Park Administration said that preparation work for the delegation's overseas trip, originally scheduled for June 12 to 24, is being carried out smoothly. Forty-one manufacturers and research institutes are looking for around 1,300 high-tech personnel, and 25 manufacturers and institutions have decided to send officials to be a part of the delegation, administration officials said. Those people who were planning to meet with the delegates and are interested in working in Taiwan can still contact the companies directly, they said.