Sun, Oct 30, 2016 - Page 3 News List

Lawmaker drafts amendment to lift cap on diplomats

Staff writer, with CNA

Lawmakers tomorrow are scheduled to review a draft amendment proposed by Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Tuan Yi-kang (段宜康) that aims to lift the cap on the number of non-career diplomats the president can appoint.

According to the law, the number of non-career diplomats appointed as ambassadors, permanent representatives and deputy permanent representatives cannot exceed 10 percent of the total.

As there are 95 such positions, it means that at any given time only nine people who are not career foreign-service personnel can be appointed, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a report submitted to the legislature.

Tuan said the quota should be lifted to facilitate the government’s efforts to promote foreign relations and take part in international organizations.

In selecting and appointing ambassadors and permanent representatives, priority should be given to candidates who are familiar with destination countries or have relevant experience or expertise and are willing to espouse the government’s policies, Tuan said.

The ministry is said to support the reform in principle, asking only that opportunities for career diplomats to be promoted are retained.

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