The National Immigration Agency (NIA) announced late on Saturday that restrictions on Chinese business visitors would be eased, with the duration of stay extended to one month from 14 days. NIA Deputy Director-General Ho Jung-chun (何榮村) said the relaxation was part of amended regulations governing visits by Chinese business executives and professionals promulgated by the Ministry of the Interior the previous day. Ho said Chinese citizens made about 80,000 business visits to Taiwan last year. Previous regulations stipulated that local companies with an annual turnover of less than NT$30 million (US$917,400) were eligible to host a maximum of 15 Chinese business visitors annually. Under the new regulations, that number was raised to 45. The number of Chinese business visitors that local businesses with annual turnover of NT$30 million or more can host each year has been raised to 200 from the initial 50.
Two new A(H1N1) cases
The Central Epidemics Command Centers (CECC) announced two imported A(H1N1) cases yesterday, bringing the total number of cases in Taiwan to 19. “Case 18” was a 32-year-old Taiwanese female who had returned to Taiwan following a trip to Australia. Her husband was also listed as a possible swine flu case and quarantined. He displayed symptoms of the illness, CECC spokesman Shih Wen-yi (施文儀) said. “The rest of the tour group — 13 people altogether — as well as 29 passengers who shared a flight with “Case 18” and sat in close proximity to her, were asked to monitor their health and report to the Centers for Disease Control if they developed flu-like symptoms,” he said. “Case 19” was a 15-year-old boy of US nationality who arrived in Taiwan from Utah with his mother after transits in Los Angeles and Tokyo, Shih said. As the boy’s mother displayed symptoms of the flu, she was quarantined and listed as a suspected case, Shih said, adding that six people who came in close contact with the boy were asked to stay home and monitor their health.
Group wants free vaccines
The government should consider including many vaccines needed by children in the national health insurance plan as many parents with young children find vaccine shots expensive, the Taiwan Immunization Vision and Strategy (TIVS) alliance said. Citing a poll conducted last month, TIVS secretary-general Lee Bing-ying (李秉穎) said that while 67.7 percent of respondents said that as a result of the economic downturn they were more reluctant to bring their children to clinics for vaccine shots, 92.9 percent of parents nevertheless paid for the service. “While [parents] worry about money, they still pay to ensure their loved ones are protected,” Lee said.
Taipei targets graffiti
Taipei City will crack down on graffiti on public property and redouble efforts to keep the city clean. Individuals found to have arbitrarily defaced public property will face fines of up to NT$6,000, Department of Environmental Protection officials said yesterday. The city made the decision after workers had trouble cleaning graffiti done with certain types of markers or spray paint and had to spend considerable sums of money to get it off walls and other venues. The government advised graffiti enthusiasts to practice art at designated areas.
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
The Fancy Frontier manga and anime expo held in Taipei over the weekend has sparked controversy, after a participant allegedly contravened the Act on Offenses Against Sexual Morality (妨害風化罪) by publicly exposing her private parts during a photo shoot. The two-day event opened at the Expo Dome at the Taipei Expo Park on Saturday, attracting numerous comic and anime creators, cosplayers, photographers and fans. Allegedly, a female cosplayer who was not wearing any underwear lifted up her skirt and revealed her private parts at an outdoor photography area near the venue. Event organizers said yesterday that to prevent indecent exposure, they have since
YOUNGEST PATIENT: Cases of botulism have been only sporadically reported over the past few years, with two in 2015, six in 2016 and none in the past three years The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) yesterday reported the nation’s first case of infant botulism this year, a four-month-old boy in northern Taiwan, as well as five new cases of Japanese encephalitis confirmed last week. The boy was introduced to homemade solid food in the middle of last month, but began to experience constipation and loss of appetite on June 23, CDC Epidemic Intelligence Center Deputy Director Guo Hung-wei (郭宏偉) said, adding that he was taken to the hospital when he developed a fever and shortness of breath on June 25. In the hospital, the boy also experienced a rapid heartbeat, limb
The National Taiwan Museum’s Railway Department Park in Taipei is to open to the public today. The park in Datong District (大同) near the North Gate (北門, Beimen) is one of the museum’s four branches. During the Japanese colonial era, the site housed the railway department of the Office of the Governor-General of Taiwan’s Bureau of Transportation. After World War II, it served as the headquarters for the Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) for several decades. In 2007, it was listed as a national monument under the Cultural Heritage Preservation Act (文化資產保存法). At an opening ceremony yesterday, Minister of Transportation and Communications Lin Chia-lung