New Southbound Policy Office Director James Huang (黃志芳) has been named chairman of the nation’s main trade promotion body, the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA), the Executive Yuan said yesterday.
Executive Yuan spokesperson Hsu Kuo-yung (徐國勇) said Premier Lin Chuan (林全) approved Huang’s appointment on Friday, but he did not give further details.
Huang, a former minister of foreign affaris, is to succeed Francis Liang (梁國新), who took over as Taiwan’s representative to Singapore last month.
The 58-year-old Huang went into business in 2008 after stepping down as minister when a new administration came in.
“You probably don’t know that I once was in business overseas,” Huang said on a previous occasion, adding that he worked hard to learn Vietnamese and that he had many ideas on how to promote trade.
In related news, the Executive Yuan on Friday said that the nation’s exports under the “new southbound policy” totaled US$5.37 billion last month, up 20 percent from the same month in 2015.
Among them, exports to Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, Vietnam, Myanmar, Cambodia, and Laos totaled US$4.72 billion, up 22.9 percent from December 2015.
The “new southbound policy,” introduced by President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文), seeks to promote ties with the ASEAN nations, as well as India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Australia and New Zealand.
However, talent exchanges increased at a much slower pace. Students from those nations studying in Taiwan totaled 29,145 last year, up only 2.1 percent from the 28,550 in the 2015 academic year.
Among them, the number of students from ASEAN totaled 27,264, up 1.9 percent year-on-year. One noteworthy change was that the number of students from South Asia was up 12.4 percent year-on-year, totaling 1,443.
Government agencies are to allocate more resources this year to boost the number of South Asian or Southeast Asian students coming to Taiwan, the office said.
Food delivery provider Foodpanda had 564 consumer disputes from January to last month and failed to attend many mediation sessions with local governments nationwide, the Executive Yuan’s Consumer Protection Committee said. In a news release earlier this month, the committee said that it investigated consumer complaints and mediations for Foodpanda and rival Uber Eats during the period, when the number of delivery orders jumped due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Uber Eats had 80 consumer disputes, the committee said. Of Foodpanda’s consumer disputes, 368 resulted from delivery drivers canceling orders after customers could not be reached, 108 were related to the quality or quantity
PILLAGING PENGHU: A 7,539-tonne Chinese ship found mining sand in the Formosa Banks area was escorted by several CGA ships to a Kaohsiung harbor The Coast Guard Administration (CGA) yesterday announced that it had dispatched ships to intercept Chinese dredging vessels operating in the nation’s territorial waters near Penghu and detained 10 crew members, who were transported to Kaohsiung. A coast guard patrol discovered more than 20 dredging vessels in an area known as the Formosa Banks, 46 nautical miles (85km) southwest of Penghu County’s Cimei islet (七美) at about 5am on Wednesday. The agency responded by dispatching two patrol boats, the 3,000-tonne Kaohsiung and the 500-tonne Penghu, along with two frigates, to intercept the Chinese vessels, while an airborne observation unit was used to monitor
‘HONEYMOON’ IS OVER: A political science professor said that the Tsai administration’s popularity peaked after it successfully contained COVID-19, but is waning President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) and Premier Su Tseng-chang’s (蘇貞昌) approval ratings fell significantly this month in the wake of the government’s handling of the distribution of relief funds and stimulus coupons to people and businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, a poll released yesterday by the New Power Party (NPP) showed. The poll showed that 68 percent of respondents said they were satisfied with Tsai’s performance, down 8.9 percentage points from last month, while 21 percent said they disapproved of her performance. Her approval among respondents aged 20 to 29 fell 14.7 percentage points, the largest decrease when compared with other age
Passengers arriving at Taoyuan International Airport will find that most entrances to both terminals have been sealed off as part of its COVID-19 prevention efforts. Follow the signs and directions posted on the doors to find the nearest entry point. The airport has installed infrared cameras and thermometer guns at all open entrances, and all persons with a temperature of over 37.5 degrees Celsius are prohibited from entering the terminal. In addition, staff will take the temperature of those checking in to their flights in advance at Airport MRT stations A1 and A3. In accordance with the Centers of Disease