Chinese delegation visits
China’s Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits Deputy Chairman Zheng Lizhong (鄭立中) began a trip to the nation’s center and south yesterday to study the agricultural and aquaculture sectors. Invited by the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) think tank the National Policy Foundation, Zheng arrived at Kaohsiung International Airport. The itinerary for Zheng and a delegation of five to eight members will be similar to when he visited last year, officials from the Taipei-based Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF), said, when Zheng traveled to Greater Taichung, Greater Kaohsiung and Greater Tainan and Changhua, Yunlin, Chiayi and Pingtung counties.
Documentary wins US award
A documentary produced by the Public Television Service (PTS) has received a prestigious award in the US, it was learned yesterday. A Year in the Clouds was one of 15 works honored in the “People & Places” section in the Professional Non-fiction Division of the Fall CINE Golden Eagle Awards. The documentary depicts a year in the life of a group of Atayal Aborigines who live in the high mountain village of Smangus. Two decades ago, the tribe was among the poorest in the nation, but its chief, Icyeh Sulung, had a vision of great trees that would ensure the tribe’s survival. The tribe found a forest of Cypress trees that changed their lives. Interest from tourists turned Smangus into a thriving ecotourism center, but sudden wealth and outside pressures played havoc with the tribe’s unity. This was the fourth time that PTS has won the prestigious award. The three previous works honored were Mme. Chiang Kai-shek (2005), The Secret in the Satchel (2008) and Taipei 24h (2010).
Agency touts English sites
The Research, Development and Evaluation Commission on Friday launched a Facebook page to publicize government English-language Web sites and seek feedback. The commission said that after years of providing bilingual Web pages, the agency was seeking to make the service better known. It encouraged people to visit the government Web sites listed on its Facebook page and leave their comments. Those who do will be eligible for a lucky draw, with prizes ranging from brand name watches and an iPad2 to round-trip tickets to Los Angeles. The event will run through March 31. More information is available at www.i-taiwan.nat.gov.tw.
NTU team finds rare jade
A team of National Taiwan University (NTU) students has unearthed a rare jade core at the Puyuma Archaeological Site in eastern Taiwan, according to officials from the Taitung-based National Museum of Prehistory. Wang Ying (王潁), an anthropology student at NTU and a member of the team, and 26 other students had been participating in an archeology field study at the site in Taitung County organized by NTU and the museum, the officials said, adding the students also discovered a number of more common jade tubes. About 6,000 items of jadeware have been unearthed from the site over the years — however, jade cores are considered to be very rare, the museum’s assistant researcher Lee Kun-hsiu (李坤修) said. Used in jadeware production, a jade core is usually discarded after an item has been made, Lee said. However, no jadeware factories have been discovered in the area, and the archeological site is 100km away from the source of the jade, the researcher said.
Food delivery provider Foodpanda had 564 consumer disputes from January to last month and failed to attend many mediation sessions with local governments nationwide, the Executive Yuan’s Consumer Protection Committee said. In a news release earlier this month, the committee said that it investigated consumer complaints and mediations for Foodpanda and rival Uber Eats during the period, when the number of delivery orders jumped due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Uber Eats had 80 consumer disputes, the committee said. Of Foodpanda’s consumer disputes, 368 resulted from delivery drivers canceling orders after customers could not be reached, 108 were related to the quality or quantity
PILLAGING PENGHU: A 7,539-tonne Chinese ship found mining sand in the Formosa Banks area was escorted by several CGA ships to a Kaohsiung harbor The Coast Guard Administration (CGA) yesterday announced that it had dispatched ships to intercept Chinese dredging vessels operating in the nation’s territorial waters near Penghu and detained 10 crew members, who were transported to Kaohsiung. A coast guard patrol discovered more than 20 dredging vessels in an area known as the Formosa Banks, 46 nautical miles (85km) southwest of Penghu County’s Cimei islet (七美) at about 5am on Wednesday. The agency responded by dispatching two patrol boats, the 3,000-tonne Kaohsiung and the 500-tonne Penghu, along with two frigates, to intercept the Chinese vessels, while an airborne observation unit was used to monitor
‘HONEYMOON’ IS OVER: A political science professor said that the Tsai administration’s popularity peaked after it successfully contained COVID-19, but is waning President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) and Premier Su Tseng-chang’s (蘇貞昌) approval ratings fell significantly this month in the wake of the government’s handling of the distribution of relief funds and stimulus coupons to people and businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, a poll released yesterday by the New Power Party (NPP) showed. The poll showed that 68 percent of respondents said they were satisfied with Tsai’s performance, down 8.9 percentage points from last month, while 21 percent said they disapproved of her performance. Her approval among respondents aged 20 to 29 fell 14.7 percentage points, the largest decrease when compared with other age
Passengers arriving at Taoyuan International Airport will find that most entrances to both terminals have been sealed off as part of its COVID-19 prevention efforts. Follow the signs and directions posted on the doors to find the nearest entry point. The airport has installed infrared cameras and thermometer guns at all open entrances, and all persons with a temperature of over 37.5 degrees Celsius are prohibited from entering the terminal. In addition, staff will take the temperature of those checking in to their flights in advance at Airport MRT stations A1 and A3. In accordance with the Centers of Disease