The Executive Yuan planned the restructuring to downsize its subordinate agencies from 37 to 29, but more time is needed to complete six remaining mergers and upgrades. The Cabinet announced that it would extend the expiration date of the Provisional Act for Adjustment of Functions and Organizations of the Executive Yuan (行政院功能業務與組織調整暫行條例) from Jan. 31 next year to Jan. 31, 2020. The Cabinet has proposed upgrading the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) to a “ministry of environmental protection and resources management” by merging soil and water conservation authorities and possibly forestry agencies with the EPA, which would make it the largest Cabinet ministry. Further negotiation is needed to organize the mergers and upgrades, the Cabinet said. Meanwhile, the Cabinet has abolished the Mongolian and Tibetan Affairs Commission, which was merged with the Ministry of Culture on Sept. 15.
By William Hetherington / Staff writer, with CNAMinister of the Interior Yeh Jiunn-rong (葉俊榮) yesterday said the government plans to introduce national identity cards with integrated circuits (IC) within one year. The Ministry of the Interior must carefully evaluate the rights and responsibilities of various government bodies regarding IC cards, Yeh said, adding that the ministry is planning to hold public forums and seek public feedback by telephone. The ministry wants to implement IC cards to bring Taiwan in line with the worldwide trend of issuing digital identification, Yeh said. No contractors have been selected to develop the IC card system as yet, but the ministry would place strong emphasis on transparency and data protection, Yeh said. “The selection process will be reasonable and fair, but we have to be sure there is nothing to worry about in terms of information security,” Yeh said.
Officers who reach the service length limit appropriate to their rank before being promoted would be discharged without receiving full benefits. After discussions with the Ministry of National Defense, the committee resolved to increase the length of service for field-grade officers. In response to reports that the military is not retaining enough officers, the committee proposed several schemes to increase the maximum length of service. Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Lo Chih-cheng (羅致政) proposed to increase for lieutenants and captains from 10 years and 15 years respectively, to 15 committee and 17 years. The committee also passed an additional resolution that would allow lieutenants and captains to apply for merit-based deferments on forced retirement.
Reuters, BEIJINGForeign companies in China have welcomed the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) to set up cells in their firms, a senior official said yesterday, though some executives have expressed concern about the party’s growing role in their operations. The presence of party units has long been a fact of doing business in China, where the law requires companies, including foreign firms, to set up a party organization. Party cells in foreign firms were well-received as a way of helping them understand Chinese policies and resolving disputes, CCP Organization Department deputy head Qi Yu (齊玉) told a news conference on the sidelines of the party’s 19th National Congress in Beijing. “The vast majority of investors welcome and support having party organization activities in their company,” he said. About 32 Chinese companies with shares traded in Hong Kong have proposed changes to their legal structure to make the party an adviser to their board.
People hoping to spot Uranus should look for a blue-green body, visible to the naked eye when looking to the southeastern sky. At the same time, the Orionid meteor shower, which appears to originate in the constellation Orion, could produce up to 50 shooting stars per hour tomorrow, with the peak period expected from 10pm to early Sunday morning. “The Orionid meteor shower is very reliable, plus the number of shooting stars it produces has been increasing in the past few years,” museum researcher Lee Chin (李瑾) said. The Orionid meteor shower happens annually when the Earth plows through dusty debris from Halley’s Comet, named after astronomer Edmond Halley, who determined the comet’s periodicity and contributed to further knowledge about the solar system. To make it easier for the public to observe Uranus and the meteor shower, the museum said it would grant the public exclusive access to its high-power telescope between 7pm and 9pm tomorrow.
Reuters, TOKYOThree Japanese automakers yesterday confirmed the safety of aluminum components made by Kobe Steel Ltd, allaying some concerns that Kobe’s falsified quality data had compromised the safety of the products. Kobe Steel, Japan’s No. Toyota Motor Corp, Honda Motor Co and Mazda Motor Co said that hoods and other exterior parts used in their cars which were made from aluminum directly supplied by Kobe Steel were safe. Toyota identified aluminum plates supplied by Kobe Steel for the hoods and rear hatches of Toyota and Lexus brand vehicles. The Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism plans to probe the safety of automobiles, trains and planes using Kobe Steel products, a spokesman said.
AP, LONDONRoyal Dutch Shell PLC on Wednesday opened its first electric vehicle recharging points at three gas stations in Britain, part of the oil giant’s efforts to respond to a global push toward zero-emission vehicles. Their opening comes only days after Shell agreed to buy electric vehicle charging firm NewMotion. “We recognize that the electric vehicle market is growing in the UK. It’s growing very fast,” Shell UK future fuels manager Jane Lindsay-Green said, adding that statistics show an increase in electric vehicle registrations. Shell said the UK is the first country in which its recharging service will be available.
“For the fourth quarter, we now forecast strong revenue growth of 10 percent quarter-on-quarter, driven by the ramp-up of our 10nm technology,” TSMC co-CEO Mark Liu (劉德音) said. TSMC supplies 10nm chips to Apple Inc and Huawei Technology Inc (華為). It said the revenue contribution from the 10nm chips might rise to 25 percent this quarter, from 10 percent last quarter. Revenue this quarter is to rise to between US$9.1 billion and US$9.2 billion, compared with last quarter’s NT$252.11 billion (US$8.34 billion). To support the multi-year growth target, TSMC said that capital spending over the next few years would be slightly higher than US$10 billion per year.
AFP, SAN FRANCISCOSamsung Electronics Co on Wednesday announced that it is upgrading its Bixby digital assistant and making it available for a range of connected devices, setting up a clash with Amazon.com Inc’s Alexa and others competing for leadership in artificial intelligence (AI). The new Bixby 2.0 is to be open to developers in a move to put the personal assistant on more devices, the company said at its developer conference in San Francisco. “Bixby 2.0 will be ubiquitous, available on any and all devices,” Samsung executive vice president Chung Eui-suk said in a blog post. The move puts Samsung and Bixby squarely in competition with Alexa, the AI program powering Amazon’s connected speakers and on many third-party devices including appliances and cars. We think of it as a service across all devices in the home — TVs, appliances, even cars.”
Reuters, SYDNEYIrish President Michael Higgins yesterday said that he was confident the country would have Australian support for their bid to host the Rugby World Cup for the first time in 2023. Ireland will go up against bids from South Africa and France in the World Rugby board vote on Nov. 15 and Australia would normally be expected to back their fellow southern hemisphere power. Hailing the “incredibly successful job” Ireland did hosting the women’s Rugby World Cup earlier this year, Pulver said the country’s bid did not suffer by comparison with the other two on financial terms. “The financial outcomes from a World Cup are very important as they allow World Rugby to fund the game for the rest of the four-year cycle. “I hope that the bid is successful and I am very happy to lend support to it.”
AFP, CHICAGOChris Taylor homered and drove in two runs, and Yu Darvish pitched six-plus strong innings on Tuesday as the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Chicago Cubs 6-1 to move within one win of a World Series return. The Dodgers, whose 1988 championship marked their last appearance in Major League Baseball’s title showcase, took a commanding 3-0 lead over the reigning World Series champion Cubs in the best-of-seven National League Championship Series. The Dodgers responded in the second inning. The winner of the series will face either the New York Yankees or Houston Astros in the World Series starting on Tuesday next week. The Yankees and Astros were tied 2-2 in their American League Championship Series after New York’s 6-4 home win on Tuesday.
GuardianThe specialist British police unit investigating child abuse in soccer has received 142 new referrals since publishing its last updated figures in June and is investigating complaints involving more than 330 clubs. These referrals include basketball, rugby union, gymnastics, martial arts, tennis, wrestling, golf, sailing, athletics, cricket and swimming. “Allegations of non-recent child sexual abuse are complex and often require specialist skills and knowledge and can take time to progress. “We continue to urge anyone who may have been a victim of child sexual abuse to report it, if they are ready to do so, by dialing 101, or contacting the dedicated NSPCC helpline, regardless of how long ago the abuse may have taken place. Anyone with any information regarding child sexual abuse is also urged to come forward,” he added.
In the eastern province, one of Indonesia’s poorest, genetics and geography have combined to produce a string of successful players and teams. Solossa’s club Persipura Jayapura, known as the “Black Pearls” because of Papuans’ dark skin, have won the national title five times, making them Indonesia’s most successful team. It is a proud achievement for Papua, known for its low-level insurgency and antipathy toward Indonesia’s Javanese rulers since it was annexed in the 1960s. Papuans come from Pacific-origin Melanesians and the province, bordering Papua New Guinea, has a warlike, tribal past including cannibalism. Soccer commentator Akmali Marhali, who works with the Save Our Soccer think tank, said Papuan players have a well-earned reputation for fitness and agility.
“You hurt for him,” Celtics coach Brad Stevens said of Hayward, his former star at the Butler Bulldogs. I really feel for him.”James scored 29 points — 13 in the fourth quarter — in his most extensive action in three weeks because of a sprained left ankle. The superstar also fed Kevin Love for a critical three-pointer with 46.3 seconds left to put the Cavs up 102-98. James said seeing Hayward get hurt reminded him of grisly injuries to Paul George, Shaun Livingston and Louisville’s Kevin Ware. Stevens said Hayward would be taken directly to the hospital in Boston once the Celtics’ plane lands.
Of the 2,447 people who participated in the vote, 2,424 demanded legal protections for live-in caregivers and 2,413 supported the right of migrant workers to switch employers without restriction, said the Taiwan International Workers’ Association (TIWA), which staged the mock referendum. The third issue on the ballot was about the private employment brokerage system, which has been criticized for charging migrant workers high fees. The vote was not restricted to migrant workers, with 338 ballots cast by Taiwanese, it said. Migrant workers are required to present evidence to prove the unreasonable working conditions that do not fulfill their contract to apply for a transfer of employment, Sumiyati said. Noting that there are more than 600,000 migrant workers employed in 300,000 workplaces, Hsueh said the existence of employment brokers is simply “a matter of supply and demand.”As long as there is strong demand for migrant workers, employment brokers would not shut down just because the government has ordered them to; they would go underground, making their supervision more difficult, he said.
October 17, 2017 15:56 UTC