Mon, Dec 20, 2004 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan Quick Take

AGENCIES

■ Trade

Taiwan an OECD observer

Taiwan has recently become an ad hoc observer at the Trade Committee under the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), enabling it to take part in certain OECD-related meetings upon invitation under the title of "Chinese Taipei," OECD sources said Saturday. Taiwan had not heard anything tangible from the OECD Secretariat since September 2003, when it filed for observer status at the OECD Trade Committee. However, the OECD authority has approved a "package arrangement" to include Taiwan, Israel and Romania into certain Trade Committee activities in their capacity as ad hoc observers. The designation is a temporary arrangement and not a formal "status," OECD sources said. Ad hoc observers of OECD committees have no rights nor obligations and they do not have to pay annual membership fees. Taiwan has had formal observer status at the OECD Committee on Competition Law and Policy for nearly three years, also under the title of "Chinese Taipei." The OECD, also known as the "rich men's club," currently has 30 countries as full members.

■ Weather

Typhoon Noru approaching

A tropical depression located near Guam developed into a typhoon which was dubbed Noru yesterday, the Central Weather Bureau (CWB) reported. The 29th typhoon reported in the Pacific area this year was centered about 390km east of Guam and 3,000km southeast of Taiwan as of 6am yesterday, moving northwesterly at a speed of 19kph. The typhoon has a radius of 100km and is not expected to pose any threat to Taiwan, CWB meteorologists said.

■ Economy

German visit fruitful

Minister of Economic Affairs Ho Mei-yueh (何美玥) returned from Germany yesterday and said that businesses there have a keen interest in investing here and that the outlook for cooperation between Taiwanese and German companies is promising. Describing her trip as fruitful, Ho said she met German Economic and Labor Affairs Minister Wolfgang Clement, the first meeting of its kind after a hiatus of more than two years, as well as Transportation Minister Manfred Stolpe and acting Minister of Environmental Affairs Margareta Wolf. Ho also held a series of seminars attended by a total of more than 200 German enterprises, which all responded positively to her calls to invest in Taiwan, she said. There is ample room for two-way cooperation, in particular in the fields of biotechnology, nanotechnology and digital content industries, she said.

■ Athletics

Kenyans win marathon

Kenyan runners won both the men's and women's titles of the 2004 Taipei International Marathon yesterday. Chelal Wilson won the men's title by finishing the 42.195km marathon in 2:14:58, 58 seconds longer than the event's record. Meanwhile, Jennifer Lingakwiang Chensinon took the women's title with 2:34 and collected a NT$1 million (US$30,959) prize for breaking the 155-minute record. The organizers set the NT$1 million prize for the champions if they break the 134-minute record for men and the 155-minute record for women. A record high of nearly 17,000 contestants registered for the marathon, while more than 30,000 others joined a half-marathon (21km), 9km race and 3km fun run in the annual event.

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