Mon, Mar 12, 2018 - Page 3 News List

Cabinet says ministries’ restructure plan nears end

By Chen Wei-han  /  Staff reporter

The Cabinet yesterday said that management of national parks would remain under the auspices of the Ministry of the Interior, instead of passing to a yet-to-be-established “ministry of environment and resources,” as discussions about government restructuring continue.

While environmentalists have suggested that the government transfer the parks to the proposed new environmental ministry — to be formed out of the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) and other agencies — the Cabinet said it intends to leave the national parks administration under the interior ministry’s Construction and Planning Agency (CPA).

The decision is to be finalized today during the coordination meeting between the Executive Yuan and the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) caucus today, Executive Yuan spokesman Hsu Kuo-yung (徐國勇) said.

According to an amendment to the Organizational Act of the Executive Yuan (行政院組織法) made in 2010, the 37 government agencies under the Executive Yuan at the time were to be merged into 29 starting in 2012.

Six government agencies are awaiting restructuring: the EPA; the Council of Agriculture (COA), which is to become part of a “ministry of agriculture;” the Ministry of Transportation and Communications, which is to be absorbed into a “ministry of transportation and construction;” and the Ministry of Economic Affairs, which is to become the “ministry of economy and energy.”

The Mainland Affairs Council and the interior ministry are also to be restructured — for instance, by splitting the CPA in two agencies: “national parks management” and “national land management.”

The proposed environment and resources ministry is to become the largest department, combining functions of the council, economic ministry, interior ministry and transport ministry, and the government is engaged in a prolonged debate about the merger.

Following his inauguration, Premier William Lai (賴清德) has taken measures to expedite the restructuring.

The Cabinet said it is close to finalizing the restructuring plan, which it is to negotiate with DPP lawmakers before submitting it to the Legislative Yuan for approval.

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