Pointing to the growth in the number of tourists visiting Taiwan over the past three years, President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) said yesterday that it is possible that the total number of tourists visiting the nation will exceed 10 million in 2016.
Speaking at National Kaohsiung University of Hospitality and Tourism before meeting with students, Ma said that in the past the growth in the number of tourists visiting Taiwan was only an additional 1 million per decade, but in the past three years tourism growth has exceeded a million every year.
He said 3.7 million tourists visited Taiwan in 2007, rising to 3.8 million in 2008. However, in 2010 4.3 million tourists visited Taiwan and 6 million arrived last year.
It is possible that the nation could see a total of 7 million by the end of this year, Ma said.
The speed of growth is unprecedented and it is evidence that Taiwan is a potential tourist hot spot, Ma said.
He also said that of the 6 million tourists that visited last year, Chinese tourists made up only 1 million, while the rest comprised of tourists from Southeast Asian countries or Japan, adding that there were also a staggering 800,000 tourists from Hong Kong and Macau.
Taiwan’s appeal is not only its rich gastronomic culture and its beautiful scenery, but also its strong morals, Ma said, pointing to the example of how a Japanese visitor had received back his wallet after losing it in Taiwan six months previously, or the recent incident in which renowned Taiwanese writer Wu Nien-jen (吳念真) had his mobile phone returned to him before he had left the station after he left it on a high-speed train.
A student from Malaysia also spoke during the meeting with Ma, saying that the Taiwanese attitude toward foreigners was one of the nation’s greatest attributes.
Tourism is not all about quantity, but also quality, and we need to set high standards for Taiwanese tourism, Ma said.
The Council of Agriculture yesterday signed a Taiwan-Australia Agricultural Cooperation Implementation clause to open a new export market for the nation’s pineapple crop. The clause is an addition to existing cooperation measures, it said. China on Friday last week abruptly announced that it would suspend pineapple imports from Taiwan starting on Monday, on grounds that it had on multiple occasions discovered “harmful organisms” in shipments of the fruit. The public and private sectors have since joined hands to purchase the local fruit to help the nation’s pineapple farmers. Canberra has requested that all pineapples for export to Australia have their crown buds removed,
A Tainan taxi driver is the Taiwanese with the longest name, after he last month changed it so that it now contains 25 characters, the Anping District Household Registration Office said. The 47-year-old man, formerly known as Huang Hsin-hsiang (黃鑫翔), applied for the name change on Feb. 26, in the hope that it would bring him good luck. His new name starts with Huang Da-lan (黃大嵐) and adds another 22 characters, meaning “Huang Da-lan is the blessed darling and sweetheart of the god of joy, god of wealth, god of misfortune, god of Earth and all the gods,” it said. With
POSSIBLE SIDE EFFECTS: As China attempted to promote its national image through humanitarian aid, its targets include New Southbound Policy countries, an expert said China’s “vaccine diplomacy,” which has become central to its foreign policy this year, might hamper Taiwan’s efforts to build relations with developing countries, an expert said. “China, as one of the few countries other than the United Kingdom and the United States to have produced a COVID-19 vaccine, will certainly use that as a diplomatic tool,” said Kung Shan-son (龔祥生), an assistant research fellow at the government-funded Institute for National Defense and Security Research. Beijing’s major goals in its “vaccine diplomacy” are to promote its national image through humanitarian aid and to solidify its relations with countries that are included in its
Shanghai Fosun Pharmaceutical Group might have lost its right to distribute the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for COVID-19 and the ability to fulfill a contract in Taiwan, civic groups Taiwan Citizen Front and the Economic Democracy Union said yesterday. In a radio interview on Feb. 17, Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), head of the Central Epidemic Command Center, said that last year, Taiwan was close to signing a contract to buy doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, but that the deal was halted at the last moment, with some speculating that Chinese interference was to blame. On Monday last week, the center