Banned pesticides found
Authorities have uncovered a total of 80 tonnes of banned or substandard pesticides smuggled from China on sale around Taiwan, the Council of Agriculture said yesterday. The pesticides, which were being sold at 20 pesticide shops nationwide, include long-banned fentin acetate, a lethal weapon against crop-depleting apple snails, as well as 10 other categories of counterfeit pesticides such as cyromazine, acetamiprid and bismerthiazol, officials from the council’s Bureau of Animal and Plant Health Inspection and Quarantine said.
New envoys appointed
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Thursday announced the appointment of several new ambassadors to the nation’s diplomatic allies in the South Pacific, as well as representatives to two European countries. Benjamin Ho (何登煌), now deputy head of Taiwan’s representative office in Singapore, will become an ambassador to Kiribati, while Jason Wan (萬家興), currently serving in Canada, will be reassigned to lead the embassy in the Pacific island nation of Nauru. T.S. Cheng (鄭天授) and Abraham Chu (朱文祥) will head the nation’s representative offices in Finland and Sweden, the ministry said. Foreign Minister Francisco Ou (歐鴻鍊) expressed hope that, following President Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) call to prioritize economic issues in diplomacy, the two new delegates to the Scandinavian countries could help Taiwanese companies seek business opportunities there.
Airport system crashes again
The immigration computer system at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport experienced another breakdown yesterday morning, lasting 20 minutes. Added to the two more serious breakdowns suffered last month, yesterday’s incident marked the third system breakdown this year. National Immigration Agency Deputy Director-General Huang Pi-hsia (黃碧霞) said that yesterday’s incident happened because of a system database capacity shortage when the agency was converting files in the database. No flight delays were caused as a result of the incident and no one banned from leaving or entering the country passed immigration during the 20-minute stoppage.