CMPC chairman resigns
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Alex Tsai (蔡正元) yesterday resigned as chairman of Central Motion Pictures Corp (CMPC, 中影公司) in the wake of a gunshot fired at the iron door of his office in Nangang, Taipei, on Saturday. The CMPC yesterday held an ad hoc board meeting and approved Tsai's resignation. It subsequently elected Lin Li-chen (林麗珍) as its new chairwoman. Tsai on Saturday had said that the gunshot incident may have been related to shareholding disputes. Tsai has been accused by former CMPC vice president Chuang Wan-chun (莊婉均) of stealing her shares in the corporation.
Biodiesel fuel on sale
Biodiesel fuel is on sale on a trial basis as part of the nation's attempts to reduce oil imports and carbon dioxide emissions. Gas stations in two counties, Taoyuan and Chiayi, began selling petroleum diesel mixed with 1 percent biodiesel fuel over the weekend, the Economic Ministry said on its Web site. The blended diesel will be sold nationwide by next year. By 2010, the mix will be increased to 2 percent biodiesel, resulting in the consumption of an estimated 100,000 kiloliters of biodiesel fuel per year, it said. The trial sale this year is aimed at encouraging farmers to grow more soybeans, sunflowers and rape plants to produce the alternative fuel. The government has made the production of biodegradable fuel one of its core policies to help cut oil imports, increase farm yields and reduce the output of carbon dioxide to help combat global warming, the ministry said.
Patient to return from China
Arrangements have been made to return the "runaway" tuberculosis patient surnamed Lee (李) from China, where he flew on July 21 with his wife despite a flight travel ban for those with drug-resistant strains of tuberculosis, a Center for Disease Control official said yesterday. The center's deputy director, Chou Chih-hao (周志浩), said he could not give details on the patient and his wife's whereabouts and declined to answer when and how Lee and his wife would return. Lee's wife also suffers from tuberculosis, although she has not been diagnosed with the same drug-resistant strain as her husband. "The couple have asked to remain anonymous so we don't want to cause them unpleasantness by exposing their itinerary," Chou said. "However, I want to reassure the public that precautions will be taken to ensure that the couple are safely isolated during the return trip." Upon their return to Taiwan, Chou said, the couple will be quarantined until they are no longer infectious.
Tao boat reaches Tamsui
The largest traditional Tao wooden boat ever made, which departed from Lanyu (蘭嶼, Orchid Island) more than a month ago for Taiwan proper arrived at Tamsui (淡水), Taipei County, last night. The hand-rowed boat is named Ipanga na 1001, which means "from here to there and further" in the Tao Aboriginal language. The boat can carry 20 rowers, the Council for Indigenous Peoples said. A traditional Tao boat usually seats up to 10 people. Premier Chang Chun-hsiung (張俊雄), council Minister Icyang Parod, Aboriginal lawmakers and Taipei County Commissioner Chou Hsi-wei (周錫瑋) all attended a ceremony last night to welcome the boat. The boat will be on display for a week at the Taipei 101 tower, council spokesman Sewaya Teason said.
Taiwan might be China’s next target after it has “walled off” Hong Kong from the rest of the world with its new national security legislation, Academia Sinica Institute of Sociology fellow Wu Jieh-min (吳介民) said on Thursday. At a seminar organized by the Economic Democracy Union, the Taiwan Association for Human Rights, the Hong Kong Outlanders and the Judicial Reform Foundation, Wu said that the legislation is simultaneously a fig leaf concealing Beijing’s autocratic rule in Hong Kong and a figurative “Berlin Wall,” denying democratic countries access to Hong Kong. Wu said it is evident that Taiwan would be China’s next target. The
SAFETY CONCERNS: A construction company working nearby admitted to negligence in the incident, and is to pay a fine and other expenses related to damages Residents of homes adjacent to an alleyway in New Taipei City’s Yonghe District (永和) on Saturday were forced to evacuate their homes after the road collapsed, the New Taipei City government said yesterday. An 80m by 4m area in an alleyway on Wenhua Road (文化路) collapsed at 10:39am near an apartment building construction site where work was being done on the project’s foundation. The incident also ruptured an underground gas pipe and tilted several buildings in the area. Residents would not be able to return to their homes until tomorrow or Wednesday, when repairs are expected to be finished, the city government said. Workers
CHALLENGER DEEP: Lin Ying-Tsong was invited by Caladan Oceanic founder Victor Vescovo to join him on a 10-hour long trip in the company’s submersible Taiwanese-American Lin Ying-Tsong (林穎聰) last month became the first person from Asia and the 12th in human history to dive into the deepest part on Earth, the Challenger Deep in the Mariana Trench. Lin, 45, an expert in deep sea acoustics with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) in Massachusetts, joined US adventurer and Caladan Oceanic founder Victor Vescovo, 54, on June 22 in a descent to the central pool of the Challenger Deep, the deepest point of the trench, which lies at a depth of more than 10,900m. The pair made the descent in a submersible named Limiting Factor, a US$37
ARMS RACE: Two DPP lawmakers said that China’s development model differed from Taiwan’s, as it aims to become a global hegemon, while Taiwan seeks to protect itself Taiwanese national defense experts are split on how Taiwan should respond to the ever-growing budget of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA), with some advocating for Taiwan to increase defense spending, while others say that little can be done. The Legislative Yuan approved NT$358 billion (US$12.1 billion) for national defense spending across fiscal 2020, a 3.47 percent increase compared with last year, while China’s military budget this year is NT$5.4 trillion, more than 15 times that of Taiwan. Regardless of whether the government adopts a zero-based budgeting method for national defense spending — in which all expenses are justified and approved each