Former premier Vincent Siew (蕭萬長) and former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) both instructed the signing of unpublished agreements with China regarding the storage of Taiwan’s nuclear waste in Gansu Province in China, a lawmaker said yesterday in a plenary session at the Legislative Yuan.
Siew, who was premier from 1997 to 2000 and later served as vice president, asked Taiwan Power Co (Taipower) to sign a nuclear waste storage deal with Beijing when he was premier, Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Alex Tsai (蔡正元) said yesterday.
Tsai added that Chen, who is serving a 20-year sentence for corruption, also arranged a deal between a Taiwanese technical consulting firm and the state-owned China National Nuclear Corp (CNNC) regarding nuclear waste storage.
Tsai called on the government to use those agreements after Beijing in April expressed an interest in waste storage projects.
In response, Minister of Economic Affairs Chang Chia-juch (張家祝) confirmed that a memorandum of understanding was signed when Siew was premier.
However, Premier Jiang Yi-huah (江宜樺) said that the agreement was suspended after the transfer of power in 2000.
The government does not rule out any possibility in handling the nation’s nuclear waste, Jiang said, but added that several factors would have to be included in the decisionmaking process, including Washington’s position on the matter.
Tsai first mentioned CNNC’s interest in handling Taiwan’s nuclear waste in a plenary session on April 9, when he told Jiang that the company had offered to store Taiwan’s nuclear waste in its storage site in Gansu Province.
Jiang said he had no information on the offer, adding that “politically, it would not be a feasible option.”