Aboriginal arts and culture hub opens in PingtungBy Lo Hsin-chen and Jason Pan / Staff reportersGovernment officials and Aboriginal community leaders yesterday celebrated the opening of a center in Pingtung City to showcase Aboriginal arts and culture. “The Pingtung Harvest will become a landmark for Aboriginal enterprises, and its themed buildings will enable visitors to learn about Aboriginal cultures,” Pan said. The Pingtung Harvest is housed in six historic buildings in a former military dependents’ village, with each house showcasing an aspect of Aboriginal culture, such as food, music, textiles, children, home and village communities, the officials said. The restoration of the buildings was funded with NT$7 million (US$250,824) from the Ministry of Culture, NT$5 million from the council and NT$1.5 million from the Pingtung County Government, the officials said. Exhibitions would also highlight hand-woven clothing and Aboriginal furniture-making, they said, adding that guided tours would be offered.
KMT campaigns for referendumsBy Shih Hsiao-kuang and Jake Chung / Staff reporter, with staff writerThe Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) yesterday held events across the nation to “celebrate Mother’s Day” and promote its US pork import and referendum voting initiatives. One proposal, initiated by KMT Legislator Lin Wei-chou (林為洲), asks: “Do you agree to a total ban on the importation of pork and related products containing leanness-enhancing additives (ractopamine and other beta agonists)?”From left, former Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) vice chairman Hau Lung-bin, Broadcasting Corp of China chairman Jaw Shaw-kong, KMT Chairman Johnny Chiang, former KMT chairman Eric Chu and National Policy Foundation vice chairman Sean Lien hold carnations in Taipei yesterday. Voters should exercise their right to determine their future by overturning government policies that disregard the safety of the people and deprive them of their right to vote in referendums. The KMT is treating the referendums as it would a presidential election and has mobilized party chapters nationwide to promote the initiatives, he added. “We understand that mothers want their children to be safe and to eat healthy,” former KMT chairman Eric Chu (朱立倫) said.
Ma criticizes government on China ties, ‘consensus’FINDING MEANING: Rebuilding ties requires the ‘1992 consensus,’ Ma said, but the Mainland Affairs Council said that ‘history has already turned the page’ on itBy Chen Yun and William Hetherington / Staff reporter, with staff writerFormer president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) yesterday criticized the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) for the state of Taiwan-China relations, and urged it to recognize the so-called “1992 consensus.”Speaking at a Taipei symposium on Taiwan-China relations, Ma said that President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) administration had failed to come up with an alternative to the “consensus” and had fostered ill sentiment toward China. Former president Ma Ying-jeou speaks at a symposium on cross-strait relations yesterday in Taipei. Ma called on both sides of the Strait to strive for better relations and demonstrate good will. The Mainland Affairs Council said that Beijing had already defined the “consensus” as meaning the “one China” principle, with no room for any other interpretation. “History has already turned the page on the ‘1992 consensus.’ There is no need to discuss it any longer,” it added.
Taipei launches upgraded YouBike systemBy Lee I-chia / Staff reporterThe Taipei City Government yesterday officially launched the “YouBike 2.0” system, an upgraded version of the bicycle rental service, saying that it aims to expand the service to more than 1,200 stations throughout the city. The system yesterday activated 160 new stations, in addition to 103 stations in the Gongguan (公館) shopping area near the National Taiwan University campus. Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je, third left, Deputy Mayor Vivian Huang, second left, and others try out YouBike 2.0 rental bicycles in Taipei yesterday. Photo: Liu Hsin-de, Taipei TimesThe Taipei Department of Transportation said that bicycles of the upgraded system feature solar panels and card censors, which allow users to rent them by swiping their EasyCard or scanning a QR code with their smartphone, replacing the smart panels on bicycle stands of the older system. The old system has orange bikes and each stand accommodates two bikes, while bikes of the new system are white and each stand only docks one bike, he said.
CECC reports two more cases of air crew clusterDOMESTIC INFECTION LIKELY: A pilot confirmed to have COVID-19 yesterday did likely not contract the virus on the short haul routes he flew, the center saidBy Lee I-chia / Staff reporterThe Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday reported two cases of COVID-19, a China Airlines pilot and his wife, bringing the number of cases linked to a quarantine hotel in Taoyuan to 31. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said that case No. 1,183 — the pilot, who is in his 50s — flew to Vietnam and back on April 19, and to Thailand on April 22. She tested positive after her husband was diagnosed on Friday, Chen said, adding that contact tracing for the two cases is under way. The CECC also reported three imported cases, a migrant worker and a sailor from the Philippines, and an Indonesian man who came to Taiwan from the Netherlands for work.
Two-day festival celebrating Europe starts in TaipeiStaff writer, with CNAThis year’s Europe Festival opened yesterday in Taipei to celebrate Europe Day and give people a taste of the continent while international travel is hampered by the COVID-19 pandemic. Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Wu, third left, European Economic and Trade Office in Taiwan Director Filip Grzegorzewski, third right, and Taipei Commissioner for External Affairs Tom Chou, second right, pose with a mascot at yesterday’s opening ceremony of the two-day Europe Festival at Taipei’s Huashan 1914 Creative Park. Photo: Wang Yi-sung, Taipei TimesThe festival was not held in the previous two years. Europe Day marks the EU’s birthday, according to the office’s Web site. On May 9, 1950, then-French minister of foreign affairs Robert Schuman “proposed a European peace project to end all wars on the European continent.
Under current regulations, Aboriginal communities are only allowed to hunt with self-made shotguns during certain festivals and only with prior approval from authorities. The Council of Grand Justices yesterday announce a constitutional interpretation related to laws regulating hunting by Aborigines. Under the act, Aborigines cannot manufacture, transport or own self-made shotguns or harpoons for making a living without a permit. The ruling yesterday does not affect Talum’s case, which is to resume at the Supreme Court. However, it was the first time a court has recognized that Aboriginal hunting was “a cultural right that should be respected and protected by the state,” Hsieh said.
Taiwan: the pangolin’s last stand? Kurtis Pei (裴家騏), one of the most prominent wildlife conservationists in Taiwan, says that pangolins can now be seen in many rural areas. Taiwan’s pangolins were also exported to China in the past, though this has apparently been mostly stopped within recent years. The largest ever seizure of pangolin scales happened in China in 2019 with 23 metric tonnes deriving from approximately 50,000 African pangolins. Nonetheless, Taiwan is the global exception in pangolin conservation, and if this mysterious, peculiar, wonderful species is to have a future on Earth, Taiwan will play a major role.
Cleanup of fishing industry orderedDISTANT-WATER FLEET: The Control Yuan ordered the foreign and labor ministries, as well as the Fisheries Agency, to take corrective measures to protect fishers’ rightsStaff writer, with CNAForced labor in Taiwan’s distant-water fishing fleet must be addressed, the Control Yuan said on Thursday, when it issued demands of government entities over the issue. The main entrance of the Control Yuan is pictured in Taipei on June 17 last year. Taiwan has 1,106 distant-water fishing vessels and the sector employs about 22,000 migrant fishers, the Control Yuan said. They should also reply to the Control Yuan in writing on improvements or actions. If the Control Yuan receives no reply within two months, it may seek further details.
DPP proposes checks on membersBy Jason Pan / Staff reporterIn a bid to prevent people affiliated with criminal gangs from joining the party, Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Taipei chapter head Enoch Wu (吳怡農) yesterday proposed a set of “reform measures.”“This is the only way forward for our party to make progress in politics with democratic values,” Wu told a convention of chapter heads that was led by President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文), who is the DPP chairperson. Democratic Progressive Party Taipei chapter head Enoch Wu speaks to reporters at a party meeting in the city yesterday. Photo: Liao Chen-huei, Taipei TimesWu proposed three measures to screen people who apply to join the DPP. The Taipei chapter has 250,000 members, but only about 30 percent have submitted complete personal information, so screening would be stepped up, every member would be contacted and payment of membership fees checked to remove “puppet members,” he said. DPP spokesman Chou Chiang-chieh (周江杰) criticized the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), saying that its comments about Chao were hypocritical.
The 90-year-old man, surnamed Chao (趙), filed for divorce from his wife of nearly 50 years, surnamed Tung (董), saying that she had not cooked or done any laundry for 40 years. “Every morning my wife goes to Gaoping Bridge to feed stray dogs and does not come home until late,” Chao said. Chao also complained in court about Tung’s personal hygiene, claiming that she refused to bathe. However, Chao persisted, and the court called in both parties to hear each side of the argument. The court rejected the application for divorce, citing Chao’s failure to provide evidence of Tung’s unsanitary behavior and refusal to provide care.
A hike along the Jinshueiying Ancient Trail (浸水營古道, 1,490m), however, with its moderate inclines and long stretches of mostly horizontal path, ensures that hikers will engage in all kind of banter. A view of the mountains along the Jinshueiying Ancient Trail. ANCIENT TRAILIt’s difficult to get lost on the Jinshueiying Ancient Trail because it’s so well marked. The Jinshueiying Ancient Trail is easy to navigate — except for when it rains. The Guzihlin Bridge, which takes you to the Jinshueiying Ancient Trail on the Taitung County side.
Cabinet unveils NT$9.1bn budget to boost birthrateBy Lee Hsin-fang and Jonathan Chin / Staff reporter, staff writer, with CNAThe Executive Yuan yesterday unveiled a NT$9.1 billion (US$325.1 million) package of subsidies for parental leave, prenatal screenings and in vitro fertilization (IVF) procedures in a bid to boost the nation’s birthrate. Amendments to the Employment Insurance Act (就業保險法) and other regulations would increase the allowance for parental leave from 60 percent of insured salary to 80 percent, he said. Workers would have to give employers advance notice before taking parental leave to facilitate staffing arrangements at the workplace, he said. Income restrictions were removed after the program reported that only 52 low and medium-income couples enrolled for IVF subsidies, which produced only seven births over the past six years, he said. Free prenatal screenings would be increased from 10 to 14 for each pregnancy, while coverage would be broadened to include screenings for gestational diabetes and anemia, and two ultrasound tests.
“In recent days, reports on gang activities and crime have been linked to the DPP’s internal management of party membership. These have led to criticism and have tarnished our party’s image,” said Tsai, who is also the DPP chairperson, at the party’s headquarters in Taipei. President Tsai Ing-wen speaks at Democratic Progressive Party headquarters in Taipei on Wednesday, apologizing for lapses in the review mechanism for party members. These will also remove those found to be affiliated with organized crime groups,” Tsai said. The party will make use of an artificial intelligence (AI) information system to prevent members of organized crime groups from joining the party, DPP secretary-general Lin Hsi-yao (林錫耀) said.
The company usually sees a sequential decline in revenue during the second quarter,” TPK chief strategy officer Freddie Liu (劉詩亮) said. Operating margin might hold steady this quarter compared with last quarter’s 0.2 percent, meaning that TPK would remain profitable, Liu said. Operating margin is underpinned by robust demand for touch products with better margins used in tablets and notebook computers, while demand for touch products in mobile phones dwindles, he said. Handset and wearable touch products contributed to about 27 percent of revenue in the first quarter, while tablets and notebooks accounted for 68 percent, it said. There had been speculation earlier this week that Apple planned to launch its first foldable phones in 2023 using TPK’s foldable touch modules.