Stimulus coupons for Taiwanese and foreign spouses with residency permits can be ordered starting on July 1 and can be used from July 15 to Dec. 31, the Executive Yuan said yesterday.
Aimed at boosting domestic spending, the coupons worth NT$3,000 (US$100.04) are to cost NT$1,000.
“For our consumers, this is a very good deal as they get three times as much value for their money,” Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) told a news conference in Taipei.
Photo: Liu Hsin-de, Taipei Times
While the coupons are to have a wide range of uses, including at department stores, restaurants, book stores, night markets, beauty and hair salons, hotels, and to purchase travel and concert tickets, they cannot be used to pay for online purchases, taxes, fines, cigarettes, stock bonds, insurance, credit card loans, pensions, gift cards or to store value.
“Each of the more than 23 million Taiwanese is eligible for a coupon; so are the 150,000 foreign and Chinese spouses with residency permits in Taiwan,” Su said, adding that to benefit the most people, the government has not set an age limit.
The coupons are to come in paper and digital form, with the latter comprising mobile payments, electronic tickets and credit cards.
Photo: Liu Hsin-de, Taipei Times
“Similar to the system for mask purchases, people can purchase the coupons at post offices upon presenting their National Health Insurance cards, starting on July 15,” Minister Without Portfolio Audrey Tang (唐鳳) said.
At NT$1,000 per unit, the coupons are to contain four coupons worth NT$500 each and five coupons worth NT$200 each.
Coupons ordered before the start date can be claimed after July 15 at the nation’s four convenience store chains: 7-Eleven, FamilyMart, OK Mart and Hi-Life, Tang said.
Consumers can also choose a digital payment option, Tang said.
“From July 1, people can choose to [link their coupon order to] either their credit card, a mobile payment service or electronic ticket, which would then record all purchases made … from July 15 onward,” Tang said.
“Once people have reached the NT$3,000 threshold … they will be notified and receive NT$2,000 in return,” she said, adding that the sum could either be transferred directly into people’s bank accounts or be deducted from their credit card bills.
A program to allow people to claim the NT$2,000 from an ATM is in development, the minister added.
For businesses and shops that would accept the coupons, Minister of Economic Affairs Shen Jong-chin (沈榮津) said that those equipped with government Uniform Invoice numbers could cash in the coupons at post offices and banks nationwide.
“Businesses without invoice numbers will be assisted by shopping districts, night market management committees and councils, which will cash in the coupons for them,” Shen added.
In total, the coupons are expected to generate up to NT$111.2 billion in value, the minister said.
“Local consumption is expected to reach NT$70 billion with the coupons alone, but mobile payment operators are also proposing 20 percent reductions, which would be even further amplified as businesses launch buy-one, get-one-free programs,” he said.
EXTRADITION DEAL? A former prosecutor said that the US Department of Justice might ask Taiwan to extradite the men in return for the US doing something in return The US won arrest warrants for three Taiwanese men — a former president of China-based Fujian Jinhua Integrated Circuit Co (福建晉華) and two engineers — charged with stealing secrets from Idaho-based Micron Technology Inc. The effort to apprehend the three men — former Fujian Jinhua president Stephen Chen (陳正坤), and Ho Chien-ting (何建廷) and Wang Yong-ming (王永銘), who work for Taiwan-based United Microelectronics Corp (UMC, 聯電) — is notable because they were charged in 2018 in the first case filed under the “China initiative” of US President Donald Trump’s administration targeting trade-secret theft, hacking and economic espionage. However, legal experts have said
There was a net reduction last year in the number of Taipei residents and this year is expected to set a 23-year high for population decline in the city, Ministry of the Interior statistics released yesterday showed. From January to last month, 18,861 more people moved out of Taipei than moved into the capital, an increase of 7,000 from the same period last year, the data showed. That is a 7.2 percent decrease in the city’s population since the start of the year, the biggest drop in both percentage and total number among all municipalities and counties nationwide, the data showed. The data
COUNCILS CLASH: The Mainland Affairs Council said a new office in Hong Kong is to assist people with issues related to investment, study and employment in Taiwan The Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) yesterday denied an accusation by the Hong Kong-Taiwan Economic and Cultural Co-operation and Promotion Council that its Taiwanese counterpart in the territory was “interfering with Hong Kong’s internal affairs.” The Hong Kong council leveled the accusation after Taipei’s Taiwan-Hong Kong Economic and Cultural Co-operation Council this month announced it would establish a Taiwan-Hong Kong Services and Exchanges Office to facilitate humanitarian aid for Hong Kongers. The new office is scheduled to begin operations on Wednesday. The MAC yesterday asked the Hong Kong council to “not misinterpret” the government’s intentions. The two Taiwan-Hong Kong councils were established in 2010 to
IRRESPONSIBLE ATTITUDES? Some experts say the NHI system does not do enough to educate the public, or pay doctors to talk to patients, about healthy lifestyles While the life expectancy of Taiwanese newborns in 2018 reached 80.69 years, the number of years people spent in poor health hit a record high at 8.41 years, Ministry of Health and Welfare statistics showed on Saturday. Healthy life expectancy is calculated by a person’s life expectancy minus the time they spend in ill health, such as the loss of mobility, disabilities and chronic disease, based on medical records and calculations about the years they live with disabilities. The number of years that Taiwanese spend in poor health is increasing slowly, but steadily, rising by 0.46 years, or five-and-a-half months, between 2012