Civic groups yesterday said they are planning to protest against the “opaque” cross-strait service trade agreement on July 27 to express their concerns about the negative impact the pact may have on people’s livelihoods.
The groups said the rally will be held on Ketagalan Boulevard in front of the Presidential Office. The organizations involved include the Taiwan Association of University Professors (TAUP) and several pro-independence groups, including the Hakka Society, the Northern Taiwan Society, the Taiwan United Nations Alliance, the Alliance of Referendum for Taiwan and the 908 Taiwan Republic Campaign.
Since it was signed without first conducting a comprehensive impact assessment and with no transparency, the pact may harm thousands of local businesses and millions of workers, and jeopardize national security, TAUP president Lu Chung-chin (呂忠津) said.
Photo: Chien Jung-fong, Taipei Times
“The people of Taiwan can do nothing except express their anger and opposition to the pact on the streets since the government just ignores them,” Lu told a press conference.
Lu said the groups are demanding that the government renegotiate the pact with Beijing.
National Taiwan University professor Kenneth Lin (林向愷) proposed holding daily demonstrations of between 5,000 and 10,000 protesters in front of the legislature in Taipei when lawmakers review the pact in an extra session, which is set to begin on July 29.
Three years after the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) was signed, Taiwanese have finally realized that only a select few have benefited from the pact, while the majority have been suffering from its negative effects, Lin said.
“There is no better time to ask for a renegotiation or a suspension of the service trade agreement than now,” he said.
Lin said that the free-trade pact with New Zealand was different from the ECFA and the service pact in terms of the impact it would have on the nation.
The opening of service sectors to Chinese investment would have larger negative impacts than opening up agricultural sectors to New Zealand because of the similarities between Taiwan and China in language and culture, he said.
UNDER INVESTIGATION: Huang’s body was found just outside the bathroom and showed no signs of a struggle, and no alcohol or drugs were found Singer and actor Alien Huang (黃鴻升) was found dead at his home in Taipei’s Beitou District (北投) yesterday. He was 36. Huang was also known by the nickname Xiao Gui (“little ghost”). His body was found when his father went to check on him after being unable to reach him by telephone, and called emergency services to the house at 11am, the Taipei City Police Department said. Huang’s body, which was discovered just outside the bathroom, showed no signs of a physical struggle, and he appeared to have been dead for some time, police said, adding that no drugs or alcohol were
CONFIRMED IN PHILIPPINES: The CECC would conduct contact tracing for the migrant workers to determine if they had come into contact with elderly people or children Six Filipinos tested positive for COVID-19 upon returning home from Taiwan, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said yesterday as it reported a case of imported COVID-19 infection, bringing the number of confirmed cases in Taiwan to 500. Philippine authorities reported four of the cases through the National IHR Focal Point, while the other two were reported by the company that they had worked for in Taiwan. The six — five women and one man — are aged from their 20s to 40s, and worked as in-home care workers, domestic workers, factory workers and sailors in Taiwan, said Minister of Health and
TIME FOR CHANGE: Most of those at a public hearing organized by the DPP’s Chung Chia-pin also agreed that the Control Yuan and Examination Yuan should be abolished Taiwan needs a new constitution, as the current one was adopted in Nanjing in 1946, when the Republic of China (ROC) represented all of China, while the Control Yuan and Examination Yuan should be abolished, legal experts and academics said yesterday during a public hearing at the Legislative Yuan in Taipei. Chang Kun-sheng (張錕盛), a law professor and secretary-general of the Taiwan Administrative Law Association, said that it is time to draft a new constitution. The ROC Constitution was adopted during a National Constituent Assembly meeting in Nanjing shortly after World War II and before the Chinese Civil War had fully erupted,
The COVID-19 pandemic might not have originated from a seafood market in Wuhan, China, National Taiwan University College of Public Health professor Tony Chen (陳秀熙) said yesterday. While many countries are experiencing second waves of COVID-19 infections, many are also lifting lockdowns to revive their economies, allowing travelers to cross national borders, Chen said. Academics have been questioning whether genetic mutations in the novel coronavirus in different countries have made it more infectious, he added. Academics from different backgrounds have conducted phylogenetic analysis of SARS-CoV-2 genome sequences, he said, adding that the studies can help scientists understand how the virus spread among