Foundation to be established
The Kaohsiung City Government is planning to establish a 2009 World Games foundation to help promote the city, officials of the southern Taiwan port city said yesterday. The officials said that after Kaohsiung won its bid to stage the World Games in 2009, the city government has been preparing for the games, hoping to enhance the profile of Taiwan and Kaohsiung through the sponsorship of the games. The city government has commissioned commercial and city image ads and other brochures to advertise to the world that the games will be staged there. The foundation is expected to be established Jan. 15 with initial funding of NT$5 million (US$156,250).
■ Disaster Aid
Taiwan plans more help
Taiwan is planning to help countries affected by the Dec. 26 tsunami disaster to build health centers in addition to providing them with emergency aid, Center for Disease Control (CDC) Director-General Kuo Hsu-sung (郭旭崧) said yesterday. Kuo said a long-term plan was necessary because a lot of infrastructure in the tsunami-hit areas has been destroyed. Besides offering US$50 million in relief for the affected countries, Taiwan has also sent medical teams to some of the worst-hit countries. Also yesterday, the Department of Health announced that it will donate 10 shipments of emergency medical supplies to the World Health Organization for delivery to the disaster areas.
Hispanists to hold meeting
The fifth meeting of the Asian Association of Hispanists will be held Friday and Saturday at Tamkang University in suburban Taipei, organizers said yesterday. Around 100 hispanists from home and abroad, including Spain, Argentina, Chile, Germany, Japan, China, the Philippines, South Korea, Thailand and the US will take part in the conference, with its theme centering on hispanist studies and globalization, according to university officials. Participants will discuss cultural, language and historical problems for worldwide hispanists arising from globalization and possible countermeasures in a gathering that will be open to the public, they said. The Asian Association of Hispanists was set up in 1985 in Seoul. It has held three meetings in Seoul, Manila and Tokyo.
Ambassador quits post
Relations between Taiwan and Haiti are solid, outgoing Taiwan Ambassador Hsieh Hsin-ping (謝新平) said yesterday. Hsieh, who is scheduled to return to Taipei to work at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs later this month, said now is a good time for Taiwan to change its ambassador to Haiti because bilateral relations are in good shape. In a telephone interview with the Central News Agency, Hsieh said he has assured the Haitian government that Taiwan will always be Haiti's best friend and will do its utmost to help the Caribbean country resolve problems and promote national development. Hsieh's successor, Yang Cheng-ta (楊承達), is scheduled to arrive in Haiti late this month to assume his new post. Hsieh said he believes that Taiwan-Haiti relations will be further expanded on the basis of current foundations after Yang assumes office. Hsieh asked for a job transfer last May because he has been suffering from a skin allergy. After a half-year wait, the foreign ministry has finally agreed to his request.