The streamlining of Taiwan’s military will extend to 2015, one year later than scheduled, because of the delayed passage of the necessary laws, according to the Ministry of National Defense.
The ministry started developing the streamlining program in 2008 and planned to implement it between last year and next year, but said in a recent report that it would not meet the 2014 completion deadline it had originally set.
The main reason is that the legislation regarding the restructuring of the military-affiliated Chungshan Institute of Science and Technology, the ministry and its first-level agencies were not passed in the recently concluded legislative session, the report said.
The ministry agencies referred to are General Staff Headquarters, the Political Warfare Bureau, the Armaments Bureau, the Medical Affairs Bureau and the Controller Bureau.
The ministry said it submitted the draft bills again on Feb. 16 for review by the new legislature.
Under the streamlining program, military personnel are to be cut from 275,000 to 215,000 and the number of ranking generals will be reduced from 393 to 292.
Meanwhile, the Reserve and Police Military will fall under General Staff Headquarters, which plans to establish a new anti-raid missile command.
The delayed passage of the laws would also affect the implementation of a voluntary military program that was scheduled to start on Jan. 1, 2015, a situation that the ministry said would lead to an imbalance in the allocation of military personnel.
Minister of National Defense Kao Hua-chu (高華柱) was expected to report to the legislature’s Foreign and National Defense Committee on the streamlining program yesterday.
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Lin Yu-fang (林郁方) said on Wednesday that a postponement of the streamlining program would hamper the distribution of national defense resources.