Missing by one number is missing by a mile when it comes to winning the NT$10 million (US$339,000) Uniform Invoice lottery — just ask the author of a post on Facebook recently, whose invoice was off by one digit.
The lucky number for the Uniform Invoice lottery for November and December last year was announced on Jan. 25.
The Uniform Invoice system was first thought up in the 1950s to stabilize the government’s source of income.
The bi-monthly lottery, using 3 percent of annual business taxation as funding — as stipulated by Article 16 of the Measure Governing Uniform Invoice Lottery Prize (統一發票給獎辦法) — was introduced to encourage the public to ask for invoices and also preventing businesspeople from evading taxes.
The Ministry of Finance only launched the NT$10 million special prize for the Uniform Invoice lotteries last year and there have been 58 winners so far, with 43 who have already cashed in their prize.
The Facebook social group, Ku MEN Fans, shared the picture of the unlucky invoice on Monday, with the “editor” of the group saying: “There was once an honest chance placed in front of me, but I did not appreciate it; then I regretted most bitterly when I lost the chance, and there can be nothing more painful than this. If I may be given another chance, I would wish for … [NT$]10 million.”
The post sparked a discussion on Internet forums, with one contributor saying: “If I knew I would have cut in line no matter what.”
Cheng Liang-wen (鄭良文), the manager of the Taoyuan County FamilyMart that gave out the invoice that won the NT$10 million prize, said the winner won with the purchase of a NT$25 loaf of bread at 9am on Nov. 20.
Cheng said it was only after some customers talked about it on the day of the announcement of the lucky number that the clerk started looking through the store’s copy of the invoices and ascertained that the store was indeed the one that printed the invoice.
“A friend also wrote on my Facebook page that the netizen who posted on the Web saying his invoice was one digit off was his friend,” Cheng said
The friend also said that if the other person had bought something at the FamilyMart a minute earlier Chang could have also considered early retirement, Chang said.
Additional reporting by CNA
Translated by Jake Chung, staff writer