Fri, Jan 06, 2006 - Page 3 News List

Some diplomats' salaries too high, legislator says

By Chang Yun-ping  /  STAFF REPORTER

Some of the nation's diplomats appointed by the government are enjoying unreasonably high salaries and even earn more than the president, Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator John Chiang (蔣孝嚴) said yesterday.

The KMT legislator, a former foreign minister, yesterday said that too many of the nation's diplomats are political appointees under the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) administration, and the salaries they enjoy are unreasonably high compared with those of career diplomats.

Chiang made the comments in response to Vice Minister Michael Kau's (高英茂) report to the legislature about diplomats' salaries.

Chiang singled out Ambassador to Chad Cheng Shin (鄭欣) as having the highest salary, at NT$567,996 (US$17,740) per month, which is more than President Chen Shui-bian's (陳水扁) monthly salary of NT$462,300.

Before taking up the ambassador position in 2001, Cheng was a jewelry dealer in France. He was also the director of the president's supporters group in Paris and an important member of the World United Formosans for Independence in Europe.

He was recently appointed to become the country's representative in Italy.

The nation's representative to South Korea, Li Tsai-fang (李在方), earns a salary of NT$422,796 per month, the representative to Japan, Koh Sei-kai (許世愷), receives monthly pay of NT$490,466 and representative to Germany Shieh Jhy-wey (謝志偉) is paid NT$434,346 per month.

The number of envoys appointed by the DPP government was unreasonably high, with 27 of the total 84 top diplomats being political appointees, Chiang said.

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