Fri, Nov 21, 2008 - Page 3 News List

Chiang apologizes for making 'trouble' for Taisugar's Wu

FAMILY AFFAIR Taisugar chairman Wu Rong-ming unexpectedly tendered his resignation, with reports saying he was pressured to promote Chiang's nephew

By Ko Shu-ling  /  STAFF REPORTER

Straits Exchange Foundation Chairman Chiang Pin-kung (江丙坤) yesterday apologized for causing trouble for Taiwan Sugar Corp (Taisugar) chairman Wu Rong-ming (吳容明), who has accused Chiang of exerting undue influence in order to install his nephew as the company’s new president.

Chiang yesterday said that he and Wu were good friends and he regretted how things had developed.

“I am sorry to have caused so much trouble for him because of my unintentional remarks,” Chiang said.

Chiang did not, however, apologize for allegedly using his personal influence to sway decisions on appointments at Taisugar.

Chiang made the remarks before addressing a financial forum in Taipei yesterday afternoon.

Wu unexpectedly tendered his resignation to the Ministry of Economic Affairs on Nov. 14, just two months after taking up the post on Sept. 1. Minister Yiin Chii-ming (尹啟銘), who is in Lima, Peru, has not yet approved Wu’s resignation.

Wu’s abrupt move was reportedly triggered by pressure from Chiang to install his nephew, Chen Ching-bin (陳清彬), as the company’s president. Chen is currently a company vice president and acted as interim president before Wu took over.

Wu was reportedly considering candidates other than Chen for the presidency.

Chiang said that he had only met with Wu on two occasions since Wu became chairman in September. The first time they met was when Wu took the helm of Taisugar, Chiang said, adding that Wu apologized to him for “crowding out” his nephew.

While general managers at state-run businesses were promoted from within when the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) was previously in power, Chiang said that was not the case during the Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) eight years in office.

Chiang said he mentioned this when Cabinet Secretary-General Hsueh Hsiang-chuan (薛香川) asked him about his opinions on the promotion of staff at state-run enterprises. Chiang said he told Hsueh that if at all possible, it would be a good idea to promote general managers of state-run enterprises from within because it would help boost the morale of employees.

Chiang said it might be because he emphasized the importance of this point that the subsequent misunderstanding occurred.

Chiang also said he intended to tender his resignation again from his position as chairman of the Sinocon Industrial Standards Foundation after his first attempt to resign was rejected by its board of directors.

The foundation’s mission is to establish standards in conjunction with Chinese business leaders.

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