The government has allocated NT$608 billion (US$21.35 billion) to spend on public infrastructure this year, in a bid to stimulate the economy amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the National Development Council (NDC) said on Monday.
While Taiwan’s response to COVID-19 has been largely successful, some industries have been hit hard by the pandemic, which has prompted the government to invest heavily in infrastructure as a way of increasing employment, NDC Minister Kung Ming-hsin (龔明鑫) said.
The annual public infrastructure allocation, which has exceeded NT$600 billion for the first time, would fund projects such as the Taoyuan Aerotropolis (桃園航空城), the acquisition of new trains by the Taiwan Railways Administration, the installation of air-conditioners in public schools, and the improvement of water collection and supply systems, the council said.
Photo: Tu Chien-jung, Taipei Times
Regarding the Taoyuan Aerotropolis project, more than NT$60 billion would be allocated in September for the acquisition of land, the council said.
The 4,500 hectare project, near Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport, is to be a modern industrial logistics center, development zone and urban residential area.
In the first two months of this year, government public works spending was NT$54.6 billion, an increase of NT$3.5 billion from last year, but it accounted for only 8.98 percent of the total allocation for the year, Kung said.
Government agencies are being urged to expedite work on infrastructure projects, he added.
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