Stalls offering ready-to-eat food or beverages and free food samples would be banned at this year’s Lunar New Year market on Dihua Street (迪化街) in Taipei’s Datong District (大同) as part of the city’s COVID-19 prevention efforts, the Taipei City Government said yesterday.
It would be the first time that the stalls would be banned at the annual market.
The market usually opens two weeks before the Lunar New Year, offering customers foodstuffs and snacks for the holiday. This year’s market is to open on Jan. 28 and run through Feb. 10.
Photo: Yang Hsin-hui, Taipei Times
The Chinese-language Liberty Times (sister newspaper of the Taipei Times) on Tuesday reported that the Taipei health and environmental protection departments as well as the Office of Commerce on Monday last week held a session at Dihua Street to explain the disease prevention measures.
Food vendors who have already rented stalls are upset by the policy, while a local storeowner said that sales might drop 10 to 20 percent, the report said.
Taipei City Office of Commerce Director Kao Chen-yuan (高振源) yesterday said the city government at the explanation session said that new ready-to-eat food or drink stalls cannot be set up and food samples cannot be offered, while visitors to the market must wear masks.
Existing ready-to-eat food or drink stores would not be affected by the policy, but setting up temporary stalls would be prohibited, he said.
While some vendors have expressed different opinions, most of them are willing to cooperate with the city’s COVID-19 prevention measures, Kao said.
The city government would dispatch personnel to some of the street’s main intersections to remind visitors to wear masks, he said.
The office would also help print posters to inform visitors that food samples would not be offered, he added.
Asked whether crowd control measures would be implemented, Kao said that people at the market usually shop freely at different stalls and the venue is not a confined indoor environment, so the office does not have such plans yet.
The office would follow the Central Epidemic Command Center’s instructions and make changes if needed, he added.
‘SMEAR CAMPAIGN’: The ‘Global Times’ accused the DPP of offering politicians in Somaliland bribes and promoting Taiwanese independence by funding US think tanks The Ministry of Foreign Affairs yesterday denounced China’s Global Times for disseminating disinformation about Taiwan, after the Chinese state-run newspaper claimed that the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) has been bribing Somaliland politicians. Taiwan in August last year inaugurated the Taiwan Representative Office in the Republic of Somaliland, which is the nation’s only representative office whose title uses just the name “Taiwan.” The East African country also established a representative office in Taipei, despite the absence of formal diplomatic relations. The Chinese-language Global Times on Monday accused the DPP of offering Somaliland politicians and their families considerable bribes, citing anonymous sources. The International Cooperation
Phase 2 clinical trial results of the Medigen Vaccine Biologics Corp’s COVID-19 vaccine on Wednesday were published on the Web site of The Lancet: Respiratory Medicine, in an early preview before publication. The study paves the way for other nations to issue emergency use authorizations or produce the Medigen vaccine, given The Lancet’s credibility as a highly respected medical journal with a rigorous peer-review process, Medigen’s international affairs director Lien Chia-en (連加恩) said. Lien said that the study is important as it proposes methods for converting international units for efficacy comparisons. The methods have been used for correlating the efficacy of hepatitis B
Ambassador Theaters on Tuesday announced that its Breeze Center cinemas in Taipei’s Songshan District (松山) would close late this month after screening thousands of major Hollywood movies and local favorites over two decades. Ambassador Theaters, one of the largest cinema chain operators in Taiwan, said that Oct. 25 would be the last day the Breeze Center cinemas screen movies, adding that its lease expires on that day. “We sincerely appreciate the support and recognition from audiences in Taipei over the past 20 years,” the company said. “We look forward to seeing you again in the future.” The cinemas started operating in 2001, upon
BUMPING AROUND: A total of 143 people sustained fall injuries at MRT stations or inside trains over eight months, with a majority caused by ‘distracted walking’ Taipei Rapid Transit Corp yesterday urged people to avoid looking at their phones when walking, saying 73 cases of “distracted walking injuries” had occurred in the Taipei Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) system from January to August. As the local COVID-19 situation has been brought under control, passenger traffic has been increasing, reaching about 1.5 million rides per day last month, the company said. However, many passengers have been looking at their phones as they walk through MRT stations, which can lead to collisions with other passengers or injury from falling down stairs. A total of 143 people sustained fall injuries at MRT stations