Vice Premier Chen Chi-mai (陳其邁) yesterday urged Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) to learn more about the city’s business sector by engaging in dialogue with firms and urged him not to forget his campaign promise to strive for “100 percent economy, zero percent politics.”
Chen made the remarks on the sidelines of a Hoklo (commonly known as Taiwanese) storytelling contest when asked about New Power Party Kaohsiung City Councilor Huang Jie (黃捷) having on Friday compared Han’s report on a proposed free economic pilot zone to “an elementary-school student’s homework.”
A free economic pilot zone was proposed when original equipment manufacturing was the nation’s dominant industry, Chen said.
Bolstering economic power by preparing industries for competition is more important, which is why the government launched the “five plus two” industrial initiative and introduced measures to encourage China-based Taiwanese firms to move back home, he said.
Retaining the global competitiveness of local industries and helping them become more integrated with the global economy and international trade is more important than setting up a special zone that would rebrand “Made in China” products as “Made in Taiwan,” he said.
Asked to comment on news that Han’s report borrowed heavily from a report by former Kaohsiung mayor Chen Chu (陳菊), Chen Chi-mai said that if true, Han should come up with his own ideas on how to transform industries and spur growth.
Han should talk with firms, which would help him gain a better understanding of local industries, he said.
He was asked to comment on an exchange between Han and Democratic Progressive Party Kaohsiung City Councilor Kang Yu-cheng (康裕成) at the Kaohsiung City Council about the Kaohsiung Ciaotou Science Park.
“Mayor Han should consult city councilors more and have in-depth conversations with those in the business sector. The mayor has the job of propelling local industries, especially in terms of attracting investment,” Chen Chi-mai said.
Asked the same questions that Kang had asked Han on Thursday, Chen Chi-mai answered all of them.
Chen Chi-mai, who is from Kaohsiung, said that the central government would “cheer him [Han] on” and offer assistance to bolster the city’s economy.
Asked if he would run for Kaohsiung mayor again — especially since he has been visiting the city frequenly — if Han was elected president, requiring a by-election, the vice premier said that he would discuss the matter “after Mayor Han conquers the universe.”
He would do his best to help his hometown from his central government post, he added.
He urged Han to strive for the “100 percent economy, zero percent politics,” which “got him elected,” and refrain from bickering with city councilors.
“I think that Mayor Han should keep his eyes on what he started out to achieve and honor his campaign promise, which I believe is very important,” Chen Chi-mai said.
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