Cold snap set to ease
The nation was in the grip of a cold front yesterday as the mercury plunged to 9.9°C in New Taipei City’s (新北市) Tamsui District (淡水) in the early morning, with 10°C recorded in Hsinchu and 10.1°C in Greater Taichung’s Wuchi (梧棲), the Central Weather Bureau said yesterday. In Chiayi, where the temperatures dipped on Saturday to 6.2°C — a record low for an area on the plains this year — the mercury stood at 10.9°C in the morning. Since the cold front is not expected to ease until today, forecasters predicted temperatures between 14°C and 15°C for northern Taiwan and 18°C to 20°C for the rest of the nation, adding that lower temperatures are possible on the outlying islands of Kinmen and Matsu. Occasional rain was forecast for the northern, eastern and mountainous areas.
Caregivers earn higher wages
Indonesian caregivers and housemaids earn higher wages in Taiwan than in Singapore and Hong Kong, according to data released by the Malaysia National Association of Employment Agencies (PIKAP). Indonesian caregivers and housemaids receive monthly wages of 2,200 Malaysian ringgit (US$667) in Taiwan, compared with 1,700 ringgit in Hong Kong and 1,200 ringgit in Singapore, according to PIKAP. Meanwhile, Singapore charges the workers 6,500 ringgit in broker fees, while the cost is between 6,500 and 7,000 ringgit in Taiwan and Hong Kong, according to the data. There are currently more than 208,000 foreign “social welfare” workers, such as caregivers and housemaids, in Taiwan, with Indonesian nationals accounting for about 78 percent of those workers, according to statistics from the Council of Labor Affairs.
Work starts in science park
The first enterprise to move into the Yilan division of the Hsinchu Science Park, nicknamed Taiwan’s Silicon Valley, started work on Saturday to build an operations center at the new science park in the nation’s northeast. OMNI Calibration Laboratory held a groundbreaking ceremony to mark the beginning to construction of a “mobile laboratory” at the science park. Yilan County Commissioner Lin Tsung-hsien (林聰賢) expressed his hope that OMNI’s move would attract more local and foreign companies in related industry sectors to move into the Yilan division. In 2004, the administration of the government-run Hsinchu Science Park selected an old airport in Yilan City as the construction site for its planned Yilan division. The 71 hectare site is to be developed into the nation’s first communications technology services-oriented industrial park.
Film festival in two cities
Taipei and Greater Kaohsiung are to jointly host next year’s Revenge Film Festival set to begin on Friday, showcasing a series of films that discuss the topic of revenge. The festival is to screen the Japanese detective films Phone Call to the Bar and The Detective Is in the Bar, as well as South Korean crime drama New World and thriller Montage. Phone Call to the Bar, directed by Hajime Hashimoto, garnered seven nominations at last year’s Japan Academy Prize. Meanwhile, New World, directed by Park Hoon-jung, has received praise from Film Business Asia as the “best played and most gripping Korean gangster movie since Yu Ha’s A Dirty Carnival. The festival is to run until Jan. 16 at the Hsin Hsin Showtime Cinemas in Taipei, the Banciao Showtime Cinemas in New Taipei City (新北市) and the Kaohsiung Film Archive.
TOO CLOSE FOR COMFORT: A US Air Force KC-135 tanker came less than 1,000 feet of an EVA plane and was warned off by a Taipei air traffic controller, a report said A US aerial refueling aircraft came very close to an EVA Airways jet in the airspace over southern Taiwan, a military aviation news Web site said. A report published by Alert 5 on Tuesday said that automatic dependent surveillance–broadcast (ADS-B) data captured by planfinder.net on Wednesday last week showed a US Air Force KC-135 tanker “coming less than 1,000 feet [305m] vertically with EVA Air flight BR225 as both aircraft crossed path south of Taiwan” that morning. The report included an audio recording of a female controller from the Taipei air traffic control center telling the unidentified aircraft that it was
A series of discussions on the legacy of martial law and authoritarianism are to be held at the Taipei International Book Exhibition this month, featuring findings and analysis by the Transitional Justice Commission. The commission and publisher Book Republic organized the series, entitled “Escaping the Nation’s Labyrinth of Memory: What Authoritarian Symbols and Records Can Tell Us,” to help people navigate narratives through textual analysis and comparisons with other nations. The four-day series is to begin on Thursday next week with a discussion between commission Chairwoman Yang Tsui (楊翠), Polish-language translator Lin Wei-yun (林蔚昀), and Polish author and artist Pawel Gorecki comparing
MOVING OUT: A former professor said that rent and early education costs in Taipei are the nation’s highest, which makes it difficult for young people to start families The population of Taipei last year fell to the lowest in 23 years due to high rent, more transportation options and the expansion of northern cities into a single metropolis, academics and city officials said on Monday. Data released this month by the Ministry of the Interior showed that the capital was home to 2,602,418 people last year, down 42,623 from 2019. The decline is second only to 1993, when the population fell by 42,828 people, while Taipei’s population was the lowest it has been since 1997. Taipei saw the biggest drop among the six special municipalities, while Taoyuan led the group in
‘EFFECTIVE DETERRENCE’: If the Biden administration suspends arms sales to Taiwan, the military could still ready a nimble fighting force for defense, an analyst said The “US Strategic Framework for the Indo-Pacific” last week sparked debate among analysts after US President Donald Trump declassified the document 20 years ahead of schedule. Trump on Tuesday last week released the document that had governed US strategic action in the region since the US leader approved its use in 2018. The document, which outlines US priorities in the region, emphasizes the importance of defending Taiwan against military aggression and facilitating the country’s development of asymmetric strategies and capabilities. The overall directive of the document is for the US to prevent China from establishing sustained air and sea dominance inside the first