Computer glitches fixed
There should be fewer delays with the government’s new household registration system as of today, because many of the glitches that caused hiccups in the system last week have been fixed, Deputy Minister of the Interior Hsiao Chia-chi (蕭家淇) said yesterday. The system’s designer worked over the weekend to make hardware and software adjustments to help the system run more smoothly, Hsiao said. Many people complained last week of having to wait at least one-and-a-half hours to register their marriages, apply for new national identification cards or get copies of their household registration after the new system was launched on Wednesday last week. Previously, the normal wait was about 20 minutes, Hsiao said. The glitches made it difficult for household registration office staff to access and enter data in the system, causing delays that affected about 40,000 to 50,000 people, Hsiao said.
Envoy heading to Israel
New Representative to Israel Chi Yun-sheng (季韻聲) is to formally assume his post later this week. Chi, who previously served as deputy director-general of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ Bureau of Consular Affairs, is scheduled to leave for Israel on Wednesday. He promised to advance bilateral relations in trade, culture, tourism and other areas. The 30-year ministry veteran said that promoting Taiwan’s visibility among the Israeli public will be a priority. Israel Economic and Cultural Office in Taipei Representative Simona Halperin said she expects bilateral ties to continue to be strengthened. Chi succeeds Chang Liang-jen (張良任), who is now the representative to Indonesia. Chi has served in South Africa and the US.
Philippines says thank you
The Philippine Department of Tourism launched a campaign on Saturday to say “thank you” to the countries that offered aid and support after the Philippines was ravaged by Typhoon Haiyan in November last year. “The Philippines says thank you,” reads the home page of the department’s Web site, which features photographs and video clips of people around the country thanking the world. “The Philippines wants to say a big thank you to everyone who has been helping us rebuild after Typhoon Haiyan,” the bureau said. The campaign will run in newspapers and billboards in cities around the world. Figures from the Philippines’ Foreign Aid Transparency Hub show that Taiwanese donated US$7.09 million in supplies and cash after Haiyan left thousands dead and many more displaced.
Holiday boost for Yunlin
Yunlin County got a good start to the Year of the Horse, attracting about 700,000 visitors and generating NT$200 million (US$6.60 million) over the Lunar New Year holiday from Jan. 30 to Tuesday last week, the county government said. About 211,000 people visited the Yunlin Agriculture Expo, which opened on Dec. 25 last year and will run through March 6, while others were drawn to the 100 tourist highlights in the country’s 21 towns and cities, the county government said. Flower farms in Cihtong Township (莿桐) proved to be the most popular attraction, drawing about half of all visitors, it said. About 20 percent of the visitors stayed in local accommodations, contributing to the NT$200 million in revenue — in addition to meals and shopping — the county earned over the holiday.