Mon, Oct 21, 2019 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan News Quick Take

Staff writer, with CNA

DIPLOMACY

Giammattei visits Taiwan

Guatemalan president-elect Alejandro Eduardo Giammattei yesterday arrived in Taiwan for a five-day visit, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said. Giammattei, who takes office in January, was elected in August. His visit with key members of his planned Cabinet demonstrates his support for the Taiwan-Guatemala friendship, the ministry said in a statement. Giammattei is to attend a banquet hosted by President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文), meet with Legislative Speaker Su Jia-chyuan (蘇嘉全) and Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Wu (吳釗燮), and visit government agencies, including the Ministry of Health and Welfare, the Central America Trade Office and National Taiwan University Hospital, it said. He would also visit the National Palace Museum, Taipei 101, MiTAC Information Technology Corp and Kavalan Whiskey Distillery in Yilan, it added. Taiwan and Guatemala have long cooperated in a wide range of areas, including basic infrastructure, public health, education and agriculture, and would continue to strengthen their friendship, it said. Guatemala is one of Taiwan’s four diplomatic allies in Central America.

WEATHER

Storms to miss nation

Two Pacific storms — Typhoon Neoguri and Severe Tropical Storm Bualoi — are expected to move toward Japan and are not expected to directly affect Taiwan, the Central Weather Bureau said. As of 8am yesterday, Typhoon Neoguri was 760km east-northeast of Taiwan’s southernmost tip, Oluanpi (鵝鑾鼻), moving at 16kph in a north-northeasterly direction, it said. The typhoon is expected to weaken after reaching Japanese waters, the bureau said. Severe Tropical Storm Bualoi was 3,480km east-southeast of Oluanpi as of 8am, moving at 18kph in a west-northwesterly direction.

DIPLOMACY

US visa waiver extended

The government has received confirmation that the nation would remain part of the US visa waiver program, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement on Friday. The confirmation came on Tuesday last week in a letter from the American Institute in Taiwan, which the ministry said demonstrates the success of the two nations’ efforts to strengthen law enforcement cooperation. The ministry did not explain what led to the confirmation, but the US typically conducts periodic inspections to ensure that program members are following its protocols. The program allows residents of 38 member countries to travel to the US for tourism or business for periods of 90 days or less without obtaining a visa, according to the US Department of State.

SOCIETY

Passengers escape bus fire

Forty-one people on a tour bus near the Alishan (阿里山) scenic area in Chiayi County were safe after a fire broke out on the vehicle yesterday afternoon, the Chiayi County Fire Department said. The tour bus was passing through a tunnel at the 34.6km mark on Provincial Highway No. 18 at about 2pm when the vehicle caught fire, it said. All 41 people on the bus, including the driver, escaped unharmed, it added. The fire was promptly extinguished by firefighters, the department said. An initial probe showed that the fire was caused by a flat tire, investigators said. The Chiayi Motor Vehicles Office said it would launch an investigation to see whether the flat tire was caused by an accident or the age of the vehicle or tire, before deciding whether to fine the tour bus company.

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