DPP attacks president’s plan to raise debt ceiling

By Chris Wang  /  Staff reporter

Fri, Nov 08, 2013 - Page 3

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) yesterday blasted President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) over his comment that Taiwan’s national debt was a “nonissue” and said the party opposed Ma’s intention to raise the debt ceiling.

“Ma’s comment reflects his ignorance and incompetence as government finances have deteriorated under his leadership. Taiwan will not have the EU to bail it out before it goes over the financial cliff,” DPP spokesperson Lin Chun-hsien (林俊憲) told a press conference.

Ma said in the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) Central Standing Committee meeting on Wednesday that the nation should raise its debt ceiling and government debt “is not something to be afraid of as we can afford to borrow more.”

“[Those debt-ridden countries] are alive and kicking with debt ceilings of 70 percent [of their GDP] and even 200 percent,” Ma said.

Government debt has risen sharply since Ma took office in 2008, Lin said, adding that the accumulated debts during Ma’s five years in office reached NT$1.72 trillion (US$58.4 billion), while the DPP administration’s accumulated government debt from 2000 until 2008 was NT$1.3 trillion.