The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) caucus yesterday criticized the Triple Stimulus Vouchers and highlighted several flaws in their design, including a lack of anti-counterfeiting features, which has reportedly discouraged some stores from accepting them.
People have had to wait in lines at convenience stores and post offices to purchase vouchers or claim those that they have ordered, and postal workers have had to work overtime, KMT caucus secretary-general Chiang Wan-an (蔣萬安) told a news conference in Taipei.
Street vendors who have not been unionized cannot cash in on the vouchers, while others have to worry about receiving counterfeit vouchers due to a lack of anti-counterfeiting features, he said.
Most people on online forums have said that they would use the vouchers to buy daily necessities, greatly reducing the economic stimulus effect the government expects the vouchers to have, he said, calling on Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) to immediately fix the problems.
Since the day they went on sale, the vouchers have caused people “triple inconvenience” and “triple frustration,” as evidenced by long lines at post offices and the overtime being paid to postal workers, which has reportedly topped NT$100 million (US$3.39 million), KMT Legislator Lai Shyh-bao (賴士葆) said.
Despite the Executive Yuan having given people the option of digital or paper-based vouchers, only 15 percent of people who have claimed the vouchers so far have opted for the paper-less version, he said.
Street vendors and food stand owners have to ask their market management committees to cash the vouchers for them, but not every market has such a committee, he said.
Some vendors have refused to take the vouchers to spare themselves the hassle they would have to go through to cash them, he said.
The Executive Yuan, which is today set to unveil a second special budget request for COVID-19 prevention relief and recovery, should allow local governments to manage the budget so that they can come up with their own ways to revitalize the economy, he said.
The Ministry of Culture, the Sports Administration and the Council of Agricultural have all introduced digital vouchers, which require people interested in them to enter a raffle draw by downloading apps, he said, adding that the draws are a way to divert the public’s attention from the poor functionality of the Triple Stimulus Vouchers.
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