Sun, Feb 15, 2009 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan News Quick Take

STAFF WRITER, WITH CNA

■ POPULATION

Aborigines thriving

The number of Aborigines in the country totaled 494,107 as of the end of last year, up 2.05 percent from the previous year, the latest statistics by the Ministry of the Interior showed. Ministry officials said the increase was about six times that of the 0.34 percent growth rate for the overall population. Taiwan’s Aborigines were also younger on average than other groups, averaging 31.93 years of age as of the end of last year, 5.23 years lower than the 37.16 years the country’s population averaged as a whole. The number of Aborigines over 65 accounted for 6.1 percent of the total indigenous population, lower than the 10.4 percent of senior citizens in the overall population. Of the 14 tribes in Taiwan, the Amis were the most populous, with 177,909 people, followed by the Paiwan and Atayal tribes. The three tribes accounted for nearly 70 percent of the total Aborigine population.

■ TOURISM

Fahrenheit to play at NTU

Approximately 4,000 fans of the popular boy band Fahrenheit (飛輪海) from Japan, South Korea and Southeast Asia are scheduled to meet their idols at the National Taiwan University auditorium today. The group was chosen last year as the nation’s representatives to promote tourism in Japan and South Korea. The bureau said half of the participants were mobilized through the group’s international fan association, while the other half won tickets through an online draw organized by the bureau. Fans from overseas will receive tickets and glowing sticks to attend the concerts as well as EasyCards featuring a band portrait of Fahrenheit. The majority of fans are young women, the bureau said, adding that the concert would help generate NT$100 million (US$ 2.9 million) in revenue from overseas.

■ PANDAS

Yuan-yuan scared by crowd

The Taipei City Zoo released the giant pandas Tuan-tuan (團團) and Yuan-yuan (圓圓) to the outdoor display area for the first time yesterday, with loud voices from eager visitors leaving Yuan-yuan frightened. The zoo said the pandas had become used to the quiet indoor display area since their arrival in December and that the cheers from visitors made them nervous. Yuan-yuan fled to a corner shortly after stepping into the outdoor area. She was later sent back to the indoor area. Tuan-tuan, on the other hand, did not appear to have been affected by the noise and played around in the outdoor area. Taipei Zoo spokesman Jason Chin (金仕謙) said the zoo would open the outdoor area for the pandas when the temperature reached 20˚C and it wasn’t raining. With Yuan-yuan showing signs of having entered the estrous cycle, the zoo will separate the two pandas and prepare them for mating when Tuan-tuan is ready, Chin said.

■ ARTS

Domingo accepts invitation

World-renowned tenor Placido Domingo has accepted an invitation to perform in Miaoli next month, the county government said on Friday. The county government sent the invitation for its international music festival, scheduled for March 19 to March 21, after the successful performance by Jose Carreras late last year, county officials said. The officials said that to cater to all age groups, they would also invite Brian Mcknight, winner of the best male R&B Soul Artist in the American Music Awards, as well as Maksim, a popular pianist from Croatia. Ticket prices for the three performances have yet to be announced.

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