The Cabinet yesterday approved a proposal to the Shipping Act (船舶法) that would relax the cap on foreign capital invested in vessels registered in Taiwan and increase fines for overloading ships that carry passengers.
Currently, a ship is allowed to register in Taiwan only if more than two-thirds of its ownership is domestic.
To encourage foreign investment, the amendment drafted by the Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) would reduce the threshold to 50 percent.
The MOTC also proposed raising the fines for overloading ships that carry passengers to between NT$15,000 and NT$150,000 from between NT$3,000 and NT$30,000.
Authorities could also suspend the license of any shipping company that is found to have violated the legal loading limit until the situation is rectified.
Meanwhile, the Cabinet approved a plan proposed by the Council for Economic Planning and Development (CEPD) to boost the service industry.
The government set a goal of increasing the output value of the service industry from NT$9 trillion (US$272 billion) last year to NT$12 trillion by 2012 to prevent overreliance on the information, communications and technology industry.
The CEPD’s proposal said the output value of the service industry last year ranked 28th in the world.
“There have been concerns about the development of the service industry as its annual output value has declined in recent years. The proposal will increase the budget to boost the competitiveness of the industry,” Executive Yuan Spokesman Su Jun-pin (蘇俊賓) said.