Donald Tsang visits Taiwan
Former Hong Kong chief executive Donald Tsang (曾蔭權) arrived in Taiwan on Tuesday on a personal trip to visit relatives, the Mainland Affairs Council said. Tsang, who stepped down in June last year, is the first key political figure from Hong Kong to visit the nation. He became Hong Kong’s second chief executive after his predecessor, Tung Chee-hwa (董建華), resigned in 2005 for health reasons. Tsang was re-elected to a second term in March 2007. In 2008, then-Straits Exchange Foundation chairman Chiang Pin-kung (江丙坤) received a high-profile welcome when he visited Tsang, reflecting warming Hong Kong-Taiwan ties. After that, more Taiwanese political and financial heavyweights visited the territory, including Greater Taichung Mayor Jason Hu (胡志強).
Toilets make life better
Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) Minister Shih Su-mei (石素梅) addressed the public’s doubts about why the level of private access to indoor flushing toilets was included in the country’s Gross National Happiness index, saying the index is an international measuring scale specified by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s (OECD) “Better Life Index” for measuring people’s satisfaction with their homes, such as whether have basic sanitary facilities. Among the 36 countries in the OECD, all dwellings in the US, the Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden and Spain have private access to indoor flushing toilets, Shih said. The OECD’s “Better Life Index” measures well-being by asking people to rate their satisfaction with life on a scale from zero to 10. Australians ranked the highest last year, with a score of 8.01, while Turkish people were the least satisfied, with a score of 2.91.