A tour package proposed by a state-run travel agency in China to parts of Taiwan governed by the “pan-blue” alliance, headed by the opposition Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), has drawn mixed responses.
Beijing-based China International Services this month launched the Taiwan Affairs Office-endorsed “Tour to ‘blue’ counties and cities” in Taiwan, the Chinese-language Apple Daily newspaper reported yesterday.
The six-day tour, priced at less than NT$20,000 (US$638), was proposed in line with Beijing’s call to visit pan-blue-governed counties and cities, the report said.
The heads of the cities and counties welcomed the idea, but Ting Yun-kung (丁允恭), spokesman of the “pan-green” Kaohsiung City Government, said Taiwan is a colorful place and that “it is a pity for people to discover only one color,” the Apple Daily said.
Kaohsiung Mayor Chen Chu (陳菊) is considered a heavyweight in the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), which leads the pro-Taiwan independence “pan-green” camp.
Exchanges between Taiwan and China have cooled in many sectors, including tourism, since President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) inauguration on May 20.
The number of Chinese visiting Taiwan fell 32 percent in August from a year earlier, Tourism Bureau data showed, a decline some say has been engineered by the Chinese government.
Last month, a delegation of six KMT and two independent officials visited China to promote Taiwan’s agricultural produce and tourism. They were reportedly warmly received by Chinese authorities.
Asked about the controversial tour package, New Taipei City Mayor Eric Chu (朱立倫), a KMT member, said he hoped Chinese tourists would continue to visit Taiwan and that Taiwan would maintain cooperative relations with China in agricultural and industrial sectors.
“It is just that we are a window and [we] hope more tourists will come to Taiwan,” Chu said.
Some criticized the tour package as China’s attempt to divide Taiwan, but Chu shrugged off the idea, saying that people open their arms to tourists in the same way as they welcome cross-strait industrial and agricultural cooperation.
Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) said he doubted Beijing’s strategy is practical and feasible since the nation’s international airports in Taoyuan, Taichung and Kaohsiung are under pan-green administration.
“I do not believe Chinese tourists can just parachute into Taiwan,” Ko said, adding that the strategy would prove to be of no avail.
Ko said that Taipei would still try to attract Chinese visitors and it has plans to woo visitors from the ASEAN and Muslim countries.
Semiconductor stocks on Friday took a beating after a grim profit warning from Idaho-based Micron Technology Inc sparked fresh worries about the US’ earnings power as the country is potentially heading for a recession. Despite a broader stock market rally, the Philadelphia Stock Exchange Semiconductor Index dropped 3.8 percent after Micron, the largest maker of memory semiconductors in the US, flagged that demand was cooling for chips used in computers and smartphones. The index — which is home to US chip giants Advanced Micro Devices Inc and Nvidia Corp, as well as Micron — is down 38 percent this year. Historically, semiconductor
WHOLLY OWNED SUBSIDIARY: Costco Wholesale said it expected the purchase of the remaining 45 percent stake to add 1 to 1.5 percent to its earnings per share US-based Costco Wholesale Corp on Thursday said that it had purchased the remaining 45 percent stake in Costco President Taiwan Inc (台灣好市多) for US$1.05 billion, making the local company a fully-owned unit. “We estimate that the purchase would add about 1 to 1.5 percent to [our] earnings per share,” Costco said in a statement. Costco President Taiwan was established as a joint venture with Kaohsiung-based President Group (大統集團), which held a 45 percent stake. Since the first Costco store opened in Kaohsiung in 1997, 14 outlets have been set up in Taiwan, company data showed. PROFITABLE Three Costco stores in Taiwan — in Taipei’s Neihu
MOBILITY SOLUTIONS: Tata Technologies’ participation marks more progress in Hon Hai’s efforts to expand its ecosystem through the platform, the Taiwanese firm said India’s Tata Technologies Ltd has become the latest member of Hon Hai Precision Industry Co’s (鴻海精密) MIH Open Platform to jointly develop sustainable mobility solutions for customers worldwide, the Taiwanese company said yesterday. It might include embedded and electrical, electric platform development and battery management system solutions, among others, Hon Hai said. Tata Technologies’ participation marks more progress in Hon Hai’s efforts to expand its electric-vehicle (EV) ecosystem through the MIH platform, it said. The open platform has about 2,380 members around the world, with an aim to jointly develop EV ecosystems and shrink the time to market for products. Hon Hai made the
SOARING PROFITS: Semiconductors and shipping have knocked automaking and construction out of the 10 highest paying industries, stock exchange data showed Mobile phone chip designer MediaTek Inc (聯發科) posted an average of NT$5.15 million (US$173,249) in annual compensation for non-managerial employees last year, marking the highest among all firms listed on the Taiwan Stock Exchange (TWSE), exchange data showed. That is a 66 percent increase from the company’s average compensation of NT$3.08 million in 2020, as its earnings per share (EPS) expanded from NT$26.01 in 2020 to NT$70.56 last year. That is also three times higher than the average compensation of NT$1.7 million in the nation’s semiconductor industry, the data showed. The increases helped MediaTek advance its ranking from third in 2020, replacing