Sat, Dec 06, 2003 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan Quick Take


■ Diplomacy

Japanese MP welcomed

President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) received visiting Japanese parliamentarian Tokuichiro Tamazawa yesterday at the presidential office and thanked him for his long-term support of Taiwan. During the meeting, Chen also asked his guest to convey his congratulations and regards to Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi for the Liberal Democratic Party's victory in parliamentary elections. Chen asked Tamazawa to help him arrange another meeting with former Japanese prime minister Yoshiro Mori. With Tamazawa help, Chen met with Mori for the first time in June 1999, before either of them had been elected. Chen expressed the hope that Mori would visit Taiwan as soon as possible.

■ Construction

Premier promotes projects

Premier Yu Shyi-kun urged legislators Friday to put their weight behind his Cabinet's five-year, NT$500 billion (US$14.7 billion) 10 new major public construction projects for the benefit of future generations. He was speaking after the conclusion of the general interpellation in the Legislative Yuan that started on Sept. 23. Yu said that, confined by a rigid expenditure structure, the government's investment in public construction has continued to decline, resulting in a slow pace of growth and a loss of momentum in upgrading the nation's competitive edge. For this reason, he said, the Executive Yuan has unveiled its 10 new major public construction projects, which include the building of a third freeway in central Taiwan, the nurturing of the top-notch universities and research centers, and the expansion of Kaohsiung Harbor to turn it into an intercontinental container center, as an investment in the nation's future.

■ Culture

Show for foreign spouses

A weekly radio program catering to the needs of Chinese spouses of local citizens will be launched on the Taipei Broadcasting Station today, the Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) said. The MAC said it has commissioned a private cultural and educational foundation to produce the one-hour program, which is aimed at helping spouses from the PRC adapt to Taiwan's lifestyle and social customs. MAC Vice Chairman Chen Ming-tong said 190,000 Taiwanese citizens have married people from China, making them the largest group of immigrants to Taiwan. The program will be aired on FM 93.1 and AM 1134 from 3pm to 4pm every Saturday. Government officials will be invited onto the program to explain official policy and relevant regulations, particularly those related to cross-strait marriages outlined in the newly passed amendments to the statute governing cross-strait exchanges.

■ Health

Walking campaign held

The Hope Foundation (希望基金會) is organizing an alternative New Year celebration -- the group is urging the public to take part in a walking campaign on New Year's Eve to promote public health and pray for Taiwan's future. The event will take place around the Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall from 9pm on Dec. 31 to 9am on Jan. 1. People can choose to join in or leave at any time during this period. Celebrities such as Chi Cheng (紀政), the winner of the bronze medal in the 80m hurdles at the 1968 Mexico Olympics, will also take part. Those interested can call (02) 8647-3571 or visit (Chinese only) to register. The registration fee is NT$500, and all proceeds will go to charity.

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