League savings accounts hold almost NT$38bn

TAIWAN CEMENT::The league in 2002 purchased NT$5m worth of shares in the firm, and made 93 more transactions over 13 years, its asset form shows

By Chen Yu-fu and Sherry Hsiao  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Fri, Jun 29, 2018 - Page 3

The National Women’s League as of the end of last year had about NT$37.94 billion (US$1.24 billion at the current exchange rate) in savings and more than 13.7 million shares of Taiwan Cement Corp, the Ill-Gotten Party Assets Settlement Committee said, citing the league’s asset declaration.

The league’s stake in Taiwan Cement is worth at least NT$570 million, based on yesterday’s closing price of NT$43.

The savings are deposited into 16 accounts spread across Land Bank of Taiwan, Bank of Taiwan and CTBC Bank, the declaration showed.

The largest is a NT$30.28994 billion account at the Land Bank of Taiwan’s Heping branch in Taipei, it showed.

The league in February was deemed by the committee to be affiliated with the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), and at the end of last month declared its assets for the first time in accordance with the Act Governing the Settlement of Ill-gotten Properties by Political Parties and Their Affiliate Organizations (政黨及其附隨組織不當取得財產處理條例).

The league only owns shares of Taiwan Cement and did not invest in any other listed companies, the committee said.

Since purchasing 500,000 shares of Taiwan Cement for more than NT$5 million in November 2002, the league had purchased shares of the company every year until 2015, a total of 94 transactions, it said.

Taiwan Cement in 2001 was poorly managed and its gross margin set a then-record low of 2.1 percent, an unnamed committee member said, adding that the following year, the league had the “unique vision” to purchase a stake in the firm and continued to do so for 13 consecutive years.

For nearly 10 years, the league donated NT$230 million to foundations set up by the Koo (辜) family, which has an interest in the firm, but while the committee was investigating the case, the league destroyed its earlier financial records, the source said.

The committee suspects that the records were related to the league’s funds that were funneled into Taiwan Cement, the source added.

The committee also found that the league and its branches own 11 properties nationwide.

The league’s Taipei branch office, which was purchased in 1972 for more than NT$11 million, is now worth more than NT$100 million, the committee said.

The league’s branches nationwide have a combined savings of more than NT$71.46 million, with the league’s Taipei branch having the most at NT$71.3 million, the declaration showed.

The league also has NT$510,000 in cash and foreign currencies, two paintings by artist Au Ho-nien (歐豪年) and 187g of gold, the committee said.

The committee said it is to clarify whether the assets under the league’s name are “ill-gotten,” using the declaration and other evidence.