Sun, Nov 11, 2018 - Page 3 News List

Minister plans NT$1.26bn in extra military bonuses

By Lo Tien-pin and Jonathan Chin  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

An army special forces team performs a drill in an undated picture.

Photo provided by Army Command Headquarters

Minister of National Defense Yen De-fa (嚴德發) has submitted plans to give combat troops additional seniority-based bonuses to the Executive Yuan’s Directorate-General of Personnel Administration, a source said yesterday.

The ministry is lobbying lawmakers and members of the Cabinet to support the scheme, which is designed to boost morale, increase troop retention and improve combat proficiency, the source said on condition of anonymity.

The law defines combat troops as service members deployed with a Category I or II unit, who receive a monthly combat arms bonus.

Combat arms bonuses this year are to cost the government an estimated NT$3.71 billion (US$120.4 million) and the implementation of the new scheme would increase that budget by NT$1.26 billion to NT$4.95 billion, assuming that combat troop strength remains at 75,000, a report prepared by the ministry for the Executive Yuan said.

Category I units are infantry, artillery and armor companies, or their equivalent on surface warships and submarines, and Category II units refers to the headquarters company of infantry, artillery or armor battalions, or their equivalent on warships and submarines.

The proposal would classify combat troops by seniority as Class A, B or C, with all but the most junior class of troops receiving additional bonuses, the source said.

Class A troops are those who have served for six years or more, Class B are those who have served for three years or more and Class C are those with less than three years of service, they said.

For Category I units, the combat arms bonus would rise from NT$5,000 to NT$9,000 for Class A troops and to NT$7,000 for Class B troops, while Class C troops would see no change to their bonus, the source said.

For Category II units, the monthly bonus is to rise from NT$3,000 to NT$7,000 for Class A and to 5,000 for Class B troops, while Class C service members are to see no change to their bonus, they said.

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