Taiwan part of `Spam-a-lot'
Taiwan is the 10th-largest source of junk e-mail, with 2 percent of the world's total originating here, data released on Monday by the EU showed. The EU said the 12 largest sources of junk e-mail are: the US, which accounts for 21.6 percent, China, with 13.4 percent, France (6.3 percent), South Korea (6.3 percent), Spain (5.8 percent), Poland (4.8 percent), Brazil (4.7 percent), Italy (4.3 percent), Germany (3 percent), Taiwan, Israel (1.8 percent) and Japan (1.7 percent). The EU data shows that these 12 countries produce 75.7 percent of all junk e-mail. Citing a study conducted by Ferris Research last year, the EU said junk e-mail costs the world a total of US$51.24 billion per year in economic losses.
Bird flu vigilance urged
Chicken and pig farmers should heighten their vigilance after the recent outbreak of the H5N1 strain of avian flu at a South Korean chicken farm, Council of Agriculture officials said yesterday. South Korea has culled nearly 100,000 chickens, ducks and other animals since last week to try to prevent the spread of bird flu. Since the two countries are on the same route for migratory birds, council Vice Chairman Hu Fu-hsiung (胡富雄) said Taiwan cannot afford to be lax in epidemic prevention and oversight. Noting that preventing contact between wild birds and domestic animals is very important in avian flu prevention, Hu said the Executive Yuan has earmarked NT$400 million (US$12.12 million) from its second reserve fund to offer subsidies for chicken and hog farmers to erect wire fences at their farms.
Ministry thanks allies
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs thanked four allies yesterday for helping Taiwan convince the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tuna (ICCAT) to reinstate the nation's tuna catch quota. Foreign ministry spokesman David Wang (王建業) was referring to Nicaragua, Sao Tome and Principe, Honduras and Guatemala. All four spoke up for Taiwan during the recent ICCAT conference in Croatia. As of next year, Taiwan's quota will revert to its original 13,517 tonnes per year. ICCAT decided last year to cut Taiwan's quota for this year to 4,173 tonnes as punishment for alleged overfishing. ICCAT also demanded that Taiwan step up management and surveillance of its tuna fleet.
Red-shirts moving indoors
As its permit to hold protests in front of the Taipei Railway Station expires at midnight tonight, the campaign aiming at ousting President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) announced yesterday that it would move its campaign indoors tonight. Anti-Chen camp news coordinator Chang Fu-chung (張富忠) said Democratic Progressive Party Taipei city councilors had acquired a street rally permit that begins tomorrow, and so the camp will move to a site on Chongqing S Road. "We will move our campaign to a place close to the Presidential Office. We will watch Chen Shui-bian everyday and continue to urge him to step down," Chang told a press conference. While the camp has no immediate plans to hold any large rallies, Chang said it would continue to fight corruption. The monthly rent of its new home is about NT$200,000. According to records released by the camp last month, it has spent about NT$65 million (US$1.98 million) of the NT$100 million it raised from donations. Chang said the group would announce its financial situation "at the proper time."