Numbers and official audit reports completely refute a claim made by Premier Wu Den-yih (吳敦義) that the current administration has already made Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) “grand plan” a reality, the DPP said yesterday.
In separate press conferences, DPP spokespeople and party legislators used data and reports released by government agencies to rebut recent comments by Wu, who on Wednesday was reported by the Chinese-language United Evening News as saying that the “dreamland” Tsai had mapped out for Taiwan was already taking shape under President Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) administration.
The real-estate transaction tax that Tsai has proposed as part of her tax reform has already been implemented by the Ministry of Finance, Wu said.
However, citing reports conducted by the National Audit Office, DPP Legislator Wong Chin-chu (翁金珠) said that the registration of property transaction prices and property transaction tax payments were not listed under individual property registration and that as such current assessed land values did not reflect market prices.
Average housing prices in Taipei rose from NT$360,000 per ping (3.3m2) in the fourth quarter of 2008 to NT$540,000 per ping in the first quarter this year, she said.
The housing price-personal income ratio also jumped from between eight and 10 in the first quarter of 2008 to 14.3 this year, which meant that one would only be able to afford an apartment after 14.3 years of not spending a penny, Wong said.
“The audit report pretty much slaps Premier Wu in the face,” Wong said.
A Control Yuan report released in February said the -government’s failure to levy a tax on non--residential properties was the main reason for the housing price spike, DPP Legislator Tsai Huang-liang (蔡煌瑯) said.
“These data and government reports show that Wu’s comments are false,” Tsai said.
The average annual income for farm households in 2009 was NT$872,000, down from NT$917,000 in 2000, while the average monthly salary of NT$34,415 this year was also lower than the 2001 average of NT$35,686, DPP spokesman Chuang Ruei-hsiung (莊瑞雄) told a press conference at DPP headquarters.
Unemployment in the 20 to 24 age bracket was 12.71 percent as of June, about three times the national average, he said.
Income disparity continues to increase, as data showed that the income of the wealthiest 5 percent was almost 75 times that of the bottom 5 percent, Chuang said.
In addition, the number of low-income families is up from 93,000 households in 2008 to 112,000 households this year.