Laplanche to head EETO
A French envoy is expected to assume his post in Taiwan as head of the European Economic and Trade Office (EETO) in Taipei later this week, filling a position that has been vacant since early this year. Frederic Laplanche, who served as the office’s deputy director in Taipei from 2004 to 2008, will assume the EETO’s top spot tomorrow, the office said yesterday. Laplanche holds degrees in political science and Chinese from the Paris Institute of Political Studies and the French National Institute of Oriental Languages and Civilizations, according to an EETO statement. He worked at the French embassy in Beijing from 2000 to 2004 before being assigned to Taipei. He returned to France in 2008 to serve as head of the Far East Division at the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Laplanche is filling the vacancy left by Guy Ledoux, who was assigned to the Philippines earlier this year after his term in Taiwan expired.
Number of scams down: Ma
President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) said yesterday that the number of telecoms and Internet scams had declined significantly over the past several months thanks to closer cross-strait cooperation on fighting crime. A thaw in relations across the Taiwan Strait and hard work by the country’s law enforcement authorities contributed to the lower fraud rate, but the primary factor was a judicial and crime-fighting agreement between Taiwan and China, Ma said in a speech. Under the agreement, more than 7,000 suspects have been rounded up in China, Taiwan and several Southeast Asian countries over the past several years, he said. Improved cross-strait ties have not only helped Taiwanese businessmen make more money in China and brought more Chinese tourists to Taiwan, but have also contributed to a significant drop in crime, he said.
CNA launches Japan site
The government-funded Central News Agency (CNA) launched a Japanese-language news Web site yesterday as a first step toward building an information bridge with Japan. The Web site (japan.cna.com.tw) will provide real-time news stories about Taiwan, as well as travel and tourism information, and art and cultural news, CNA said on Sunday. Taiwan’s first Japanese-language news Web site will focus its news coverage on headline news, basic historical and geographic background stories and a wide array of photos, it said. CNA is aiming to become “Taiwan’s eye on the world and the world’s window on Taiwan” by linking Taiwan and the rest of the world through a wide range of multimedia offerings, with the latest initiative extending its reach to Japan.
MAC minister to visit HK
Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) Minister Lai Shin-yuan (賴幸媛) was expected to leave for Macau yesterday to host a ceremony to unveil the new name and signboard of Taiwan’s representative office in the territory today. Lai will then travel to Hong Kong tomorrow to officiate at a similar event for Taiwan’s office in Hong Kong. On July 4, the minister announced that the two offices would be renamed. The Taipei Economic and Cultural Center in Macau will change its name to the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Macau. In Hong Kong, what was once the Chung Hwa Travel Service in Hong Kong will now be called the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Hong Kong. Lai will fly back to Taiwan on Thursday.
FATAL FIRE: The health department is trying to contact the inspector who visited the site of the illegal nursing home to ask why they did not advise follow-up checks The Taipei City Government yesterday said that a health department inspector last year had visited the site of a long-term care facility in Neihu District (內湖) after receiving a report questioning its status. A fire broke out at the facility on Tuesday afternoon, killing three people. The Taipei Fire Department said that it received a report about a fire on the first floor of a four-story residential building on Kangning Road Sec. 1 at 2:38pm on Tuesday, firefighters arrived at 2:43pm and the fire was put out by 3:07pm. The firefighters found three men in beds and rushed them to hospital for
Taipei City Councilor Wang Hao (王浩) of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) on Monday called for security improvements to the MRT, as fare evasion has increased more than 13-fold on the metropolitan railway system over the past five years. Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) has spoken out against fare evasion and other contraventions of MRT regulations, but since he took office in 2015 the number of contraventions has more than doubled, Wang said, adding that there were 537 cases in 2015 compared with 959 last year. A video was posted to YouTube in June showing people how to evade paying a fare,
THE CHINA CONNECTION: As Beijing’s aggression increases, so does Taiwanese consciousness, making a new constitution imperative, Hsu Wei-chun said If the nation is to ratify a new constitution, it must first end any illusions about the current document’s relevance to Taiwan, an academic told a forum in Taipei yesterday. For the constitutional revisionist movement to succeed, it needs public enthusiasm, the right timing and a clear plan of action, Chung Yuan Christian University associate professor Hsu Wei-chun (徐偉群) told attendees at the event titled “Imagining a New Constitution for a New Era,” which was organized by the National Taiwan University Graduate Student Association. The Constitution exists under the “one China” framework and has little relevance to Taiwan, Hsu said, adding that
Yuchi Township (魚池) fishers have appealed to the Nantou County Government for help in dealing with an invasive fish species in Sun Moon Lake (日月潭), where it has devastated the local ecosystem. Fishers at Sun Moon Lake have been using electrofishing in an attempt to eliminate the giant snakehead fish — found in Africa and Southeast Asia — but they have struggled to keep up with the growing population of the species, which breeds during September and October, the county government said on Monday. The county has contacted researchers at National Tsing Hua University, saying it hoped they could come up