By Kuo Chia-erh / Staff reporterFar Eastern New Century Corp (FENC, 遠東新世紀) yesterday signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with a Swiss-based health service provider to commercialize its smartwear technology. However, FENC is the first to secure a partnership with a foreign brand to offer smartwear solutions. FENC yesterday also inked an MOU with Freeport, Maine-based US outdoor apparel company LL Bean Inc to develop a line of smart clothing for athletes. The company said it is also in talks with several global brands about its smartwear solutions. It expects revenue contribution from smartwear solutions to increase over the coming years.
By Shelley Shan / Staff reporterThe Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) yesterday said it will reveal ticket fare adjustments for the Taiwan Railways Administration’s (TRA) services next year. However, the lawmakers questioned Hochen about a report published yesterday by the Chinese-language China Times that the TRA has proposed the ministry to adjust ticket prices. “The railway operator had submitted similar plans in the past, which were mainly designed to reflect the rise in its operational costs over the past 22 years. We cannot simply adjust ticket prices to reflect the increase in operational costs. If these two conditions are met, the plan to adjust the ticket prices could proceed with a reasonable expectation for a rise in service quality,” he said.
The US jobless rate has fallen to 4.2 percent, its lowest level since 2001, and the participation rate has shown stabilization as Americans come back into the workforce. “On balance, wage gains appear moderate, and the pace seems broadly consistent with a tightening labor market once we account for the disappointing productivity growth in recent years,” Yellen said in her prepared comments. “We continue to expect that the ongoing strength of the economy will warrant gradual increases in that rate to sustain a healthy labor market and stabilize inflation around our 2 percent longer-run objective,” Yellen said. “Our balance sheet will decline gradually and predictably,” she said, avoiding outside movements in interest rates and market strains. Some Fed officials have cited concerns over financial stability as another reason to gradually raise rates after US stock markets reached record highs.
Taitung County was the worst affected out of 22 cities and counties, as agricultural losses there totaled NT$13.46 million, more than half of the national total. Hualien County farms followed closely behind with NT$9.82 million in losses, or about 40 percent of the national total, while Yilan County farms lost about NT$769,000 due to the inclement weather. Crop losses reached at least NT$12.8 million, as 197 hectares of rice paddies sustained damage, accounting for NT$4.51 million of the total crop losses. Livestock farms, primarily poultry farms, reported rain-induced losses of at least NT$3.46 million, while the aquaculture sector suffered losses of NT$1.84 million, in tilapia and clam farming. The Executive Yuan said affected farmers could apply for cash remedies and low-interest loans from local governments within seven days after the disaster.
Lai, who assumed the post on Sept. 8, has garnered the approval of 68.8 percent of respondents, while 23 percent expressed dissatisfaction. The premier is heeding public opinion, according to 60.2 percent of respondents, while 30.3 percent said he is not. Tsai’s approval rating stands at 49.7 percent, while her disapproval rating is at 45.1 percent. Just over half of respondents at 54.8 percent said they support Tsai, while 40.4 percent said they do not. “In terms of polling performance, the [administration] has weathered an unstable period after Lai’s inauguration,” Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Pasuya Yao (姚文智) said.
Shopee Taiwan claimed to be a subsidiary of Singapore-based Sea Ltd and was registered in Taiwan as a Singaporean company with paid-in capital of NT$5 million (US$165,793.50), Yeh said. Shopee Taiwan, Garena Taiwan and Aipei Taiwan appear to have intentionally hidden their investor structure and provided untrue information to the government, which would mean that their company registrations are acts of forgery, Yeh said. Shopee Taiwan has denied Yeh’s allegations. “We have been abiding by Taiwan’s regulations and we are willing to explain our operations to relevant agencies,” Shopee Taiwan said in a statement. “The worst scenario would see Shopee Taiwan be asked to withdraw its investments from Taiwan,” Chang said.
Staff writer, with CNAUS President Donald Trump’s failure to fill many of the top posts in his administration has hampered defense cooperation between Taiwan and the US, US-Taiwan Business Council president Rupert Hammond-Chambers told a news conference on Sunday. Hammond-Chambers said that although he is “frustrated,” he is still optimistic about ongoing defense cooperation between the two nations. The department did not say “No,” but the situation in Washington is that there is no one to make a decision, Hammond-Chambers said, and the vacant posts have affected the implementation of defense security plans between Taiwan and the US. He said he agrees that Taiwan’s insufficient defense budget has had a negative effect on its ability to upgrade its air combat capabilities and deter threats. The conference, held from Sunday to today in Princeton, New Jersey, is a platform for dialogue on Taiwan’s national security needs, weapons procurement and defense cooperation with the US.
Staff reporter, with CNAThe Ministry of National Defense (MND) yesterday dismissed as “groundless” and “pure speculation” a newspaper report that Taiwan’s navy could offer humanitarian assistance if a war were to break out between the US and North Korea. The official was cited as saying that the nation’s military could offer humanitarian assistance to the US if an all-out war broke out between the US and North Korea, resulting in heavy casualties. The ministry released a statement dismissing the report, saying it was “fictitious” and “far from the truth.”It called on media outlets to verify their information with authorities before publishing groundless reports that could mislead the public. It is used to transport fuel, ammunition and other supplies to warships in wartime, the navy said. In peacetime, it is used to carry supplies, conduct maritime rescue operations and provide humanitarian assistance, it said.
The fatal accident was one of the topics at a meeting of the Legislative Yuan’s Transportation Committee yesterday. Cheng questioned why the travel agency continued to take tourists there if it knew that there would be heavy rain in the area, adding that the travel agency would be at fault if it had gone on to hold the tour despite the area to be visited being a disaster zone. Chang also said that the Regulations Governing Travel Agencies (旅行業管理規則) stated travel agencies would face penalties if it is determined that they failed to ensure safety during tours. According to the regulations, a travel agency can be fined a maximum of NT$50,000 for failing to ensure tourists’ safety, Chang saidHowever, the Transportation Committee last week proposed raising the penalty to NT$500,000, he added. Whether the travel agency would be penalized for the accident would depend on the results of the investigation, Chang said.
The deal offered 25 million GDRs, constituting 125 million shares, or 11 percent of the company’s issued equity capital, it said. The deal is the firm’s second GDR offering and its largest equity capital increase after a US$206 million offering in 2012. The GDR offering will allow it to take better advantage of business opportunities in those regions and enhance its financial flexibility to support future growth, it said. In the first half of the year, Taiwan, China and Thailand generated 55 percent, 34 percent and 7 percent of profits respectively, it said. Chailese shares gained 45 percent this year, outpacing the TAIEX’s 16 percent advance, Taiwan Stock Exchange data showed.
By Crystal Hsu / Staff reporterThe amount and value of presale and new housing projects launched in northern Taiwan last quarter dropped 20 percent from the same period last year because of the lunar Ghost Month, the Chinese-language Housing Monthly said. Many builders and developers preferred to sit out Ghost Month, when Taiwanese avoid busying major goods, getting married or establishing new businesses. Builders and developers launched NT$158.96 billion (US$5.27 billion) worth of presale and new projects last quarter, the lowest quarterly figure since 2004, the magazine said. Taipei reported NT$44.93 billion of presale and new housing projects last quarter, a 25 percent drop from a year earlier. Ho attributed the retreat to delay tactics by major luxury housing projects that still have difficulty finding buyers.
Staff writer, with CNAInnolux Corp (群創) was the third-biggest supplier of large display screens in the world in the second quarter of the year, according to International Data Corp (IDC). Second-quarter global shipments of large screens totaled 200 million units, up 5.9 percent from a year earlier, with Innolux accounting for 33.6 million units, IDC data showed. AU Optronics Corp (AUO, 友達) was in fourth place in the global rankings, with a 13.8 percent market share, down from 15.3 percent a year earlier. Its shipments fell 2.2 percent to 27.6 million units, IDC said. LG Display Co of South Korea was in second place with a global market share of 17.2 percent.
“China’s economic growth has slowed over the past few years ... but economic growth has rebounded this year, with GDP reaching 6.9 percent in the first half, and may achieve 7 percent in the second half,” Zhou was quoted as saying at the G30 International Banking Seminar in Washington on Sunday. Zhou, the country’s longest-serving central bank chief, is likely to step down next year, sources said. Investors are waiting to see if sustained economic growth this year will give China’s leaders the confidence to quicken and deepen reforms, though many say Beijing continues to rely too heavily on debt-fueled stimulus. Risks in so-called shadow banking have somewhat eased, while non-performing loans are still at a relatively low level, the central bank said. Chinese authorities are trying to walk a fine line by containing riskier types of financing and slowing an explosive build-up in debt without stunting economic growth.
By Lin Chia-nan / Staff reporterThe National Development Council (NDC) should not exploit the nation’s farmland by exempting state-run Taiwan Sugar Corp’s (Taisugar) land developments under 10 hectares from environmental impact assessments (EIA), environmental groups said yesterday. The Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) in May proposed that developments on Taisugar land bigger than 1 hectare should undergo an EIA. Responding to New Power Party Legislator Hsu Yung-ming’s (徐永明) questions at the Legislative Yuan yesterday, Chen said land development in non-urban areas within 10 hectares can do without an EIA. It is curious that development on Taisugar land should conform to stricter regulations, she said, adding that the EPA should offer a more convincing explanation for the divergent standard it proposed. “We have to face reality and re-evaluate the status quo of the company’s land.”Environmental groups said Taisugar lands are supposed to be public properties, rather than a private asset.
Staff writerCPC Corp, Taiwan (CPC, 台灣中油) yesterday announced that it would keep gasoline prices unchanged this week from last week, but cut diesel prices by NT$0.1 per liter, effective today. The state-run refiner said that global crude oil prices fluctuated in volatile trading last week, affected by factors such as a higher-than-expected decrease in US crude oil inventories, increased geopolitical tensions in the Middle East and rising concern over OPEC’s determination to implement an output cut, a CPC statement said. Under CPC’s weighted pricing mechanism — 70 percent Dubai crude and 30 percent Brent crude — its average crude oil costs fell US$0.09 to US$55.01 per barrel over the past week, from US$55.1. After factoring in the appreciation of the New Taiwan dollar, which last week rose NT$0.187 against the greenback, domestic fuel prices should decrease by 0.62 percent this week, CPC said, adding that it therefore decided to keep gasoline prices unchanged but lower diesel prices by NT$0.1 per liter. The announcement came one day after Formosa Petrochemical Corp (台塑石化) said it would cut diesel prices by NT$0.1 per liter, with gasoline prices also remaining unchanged from last week.
October 15, 2017 15:56 UTC