Low-cost flights considered
South Korean flag carrier Korean Air said yesterday it may set up a low-cost carrier for short-distance international routes amid an expected raise in competition over short-haul travel within the region. "We will consider establishing a separate low-cost carrier, if needed for short-distance overseas services. We have already studied it and preparations are under way," Korean Air chairman Cho Yang-ho told reporters. Cho said the low-cost carrier could operate independently from Korean Air, in a move which may prompt carriers in Japan and other Asian countries to intensify competition. Korean Air is the world's third largest air cargo carrier and the 15th largest in terms of passenger numbers. The carrier posted a net profit of 472 billion won (US$467 million) last year with sales rising 16.7 percent year-on-year to 7.21 trillion won, thanks to increased demand for air travel and cargo transportation.
Consumer price index up
Hot on the heels of the Federal Reserve's tough new line on inflation came alarming news Wednesday that US consumer prices posted their biggest gain in four months in February. Surging energy prices fuelled a 0.4 percent rise in the consumer price index (CPI) last month, the US Labor Department reported. The core CPI rate, which excludes volatile food and energy costs, rose 0.3 percent. The markets had been expecting the headline figure to go up 0.3 percent and the core rate to rise by 0.2 percent. The figures came a day after the Federal Reserve's Open Market Committee (FOMC) shocked Wall Street with strong language on inflation as it raised interest rates by 25 basis points to 2.75 percent.
SCHEDULE: The delegation is due to meet with President Tsai Ing-wen this morning and witness the signing of an MOU on bilateral health cooperation in the afternoon US Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) Alex Azar yesterday arrived in Taipei aboard a US government plane at the head of a delegation that is the highest-level visit by a US official since Washington switched diplomatic recognition to China in 1979. Azar’s flight landed at Taipei International Airport (Songshan airport) at 4:48pm, nearly one hour earlier than scheduled, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said. The apron where it landed is reserved for military aircraft, the Songshan Air Force Base Command said. The members of Azar’s delegation included HHS Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response Robert Kadlec, HHS Chief of Staff Brian
ALEX AZAR: The first visit by a head of the Department of Health and Human Services would strictly observe the CECC’s special regulations, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said US Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) Alex Azar is to lead a delegation to Taiwan — the highest-level visit by a US Cabinet official since the two sides cut formal relations in 1979. The plan was announced yesterday morning by the US Department of Health and Human Services and confirmed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA). Beijing has expressed its concerns to Washington, Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Wang Wenbin (汪文斌) said later yesterday. Taiwan and the US only issued statements saying that the visit would happen “in the coming days.” MOFA said that due to security concerns, it would
‘CROSS-STRAIT CONSIDERATIONS’: Groups said that the Ministry of Education’s policies excluded Chinese and students should not be blocked over political issues The Taiwan International Student Movement yesterday said it would protest today outside the Ministry of Education in Taipei against a policy that excludes some Chinese students from returning to Taiwan amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Since June 17, the ministry has allowed foreign students from 19 “low risk” and “medium-low risk” countries and regions to enter Taiwan. On July 22, it announced that it was relaxing restrictions to include students from all countries and regions who are graduating this semester and on Wednesday it further expanded entry to students enrolled in degree programs. A letter sent by the ministry on Wednesday to universities did
The military last week sent “no small number” of Marine Corps officers to the Pratas Islands (Dongsha Island, 東沙群島) following reports of a Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) drill targeting the islands scheduled for this month. In an interview with Hong Kong’s Bauhinia Magazine published on Saturday last week, PLA National Defense University professor Li Daguang (李大光) confirmed that the Chinese army was planning to stage a simulated invasion of the Pratas Islands in the South China Sea this month. The islands comprise three atolls, with Pratas Island, at 1.74km2, being the largest. They lie southwest of Taiwan proper in the South