“We will launch 5G services in the third quarter as planned,” FET president Chee Ching (井琪) said. Operating expenses are forecast to jump 10.5 percent to NT$16.39 billion, compared with NT$14.83 billion last year, the telecom said. FET spent a total of NT$41 billion on 5G spectrum, including 80 megahertz (MHz) of bandwidth in the 3.5-gigahertz (GHz) band, the best suited for 5G services in terms of coverage and capacity, for NT$40.6 billion in the spectrum auction last month. Ching declined to comment on price increases for 5G services, but said that the company would issue pricing once Chunghwa reveals its fee structure. In countries that have already rolled out 5G services, it is more expensive than 4G by between 60 percent and 100 percent, FET said.
By Shelley Shan / Staff reporterCivil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) Director-General Lin Kuo-hsien (林國顯) would also temporarily serve as Taoyuan International Airport Corp’s (TIAC) chairman after the incumbent chairman, Wang Ming-de (王明德), retires next month, Minister of Transportation and Communications Lin Chia-lung (林佳龍) said yesterday. As the company is owned by the ministry, the board is expected to unanimously approve the nomination. Despite its impressive design, the project has yet to attract any tenders due to the high cost of construction. “However, the challenges with the Terminal 3 project would still be there after I leave. The airport company would still be troubled by problems with the project, which entails many complicated interfacing issues,” he said.
This first title is The Flock of Ba-Hui, and it couldn’t be more Lovecraftian or more readable. In the first tale, from which the collection takes its title, a dissident anthropologist escapes from a psychiatric hospital where he has been incarcerated. As they go down into it they discover horrifying murals depicting human and other sacrifices on a vast scale, followed by cannibalism. After a long voyage in which he sees all the beauties of the world, the artist decides to ascend the tower. It’s unusual for this book in beginning with a relatively recent event, a death in 2013, though much of its action takes place a hundred years earlier.
Trump appeared to be directing his tweets at hardliners in his administration, referring to a proposal to block General Electric Co (GE) from selling jet engines to China. “I want China to buy our jet engines, the best in the World,” he wrote. China is using the engines to develop its own airliner, Commercial Aircraft Corp of China Ltd’s (COMAC, 中國商飛) C919, to compete with Boeing Co and Airbus SE. The Journal said that US officials worry that Beijing could reverse-engineer the engine and enter the engine market. Another goal of the US proposal reportedly is to slow development of the COMAC airliner.
The Taipei-based developer was seeking to build land stock and outbid the only other bidder in the auction. “The outbreak is bound to have negative impact on the property market in the short run, but the company cannot sit idle until after the virus is contained,” Highwealth spokesman Liao Chao-hsiung (廖昭雄) said. Highwealth has had several construction projects in Taichung and knows the plot’s value, he said. Cushman & Wakefield Taiwan manager Eagle Lai (賴一毅) said that the auction result should inject badly needed confidence into the local property market, as the outbreak chills business activity. The plot might have a floor area ratio of 650 percent, he said.
Reuters, JAKARTAIndonesian Minister of Finance Sri Mulyani Indrawati yesterday proposed new duties on sweetened drinks, vehicles that emit carbon dioxide and plastic bags, to control consumption of the products in Southeast Asia’s largest economy. The proposal comes amid weak tax collection after the economy grew at its slowest pace in three years last year. Indrawati also brought up again her 2017 proposal to impose an excise tax of 200 rupiah per bag on plastic bags, which parliament has not yet approved. The levy, though small, could halve Indonesia’s consumption of plastic bags to 53,533 tonnes a year, she said. The total additional revenue expected from all three measures per fiscal year is 23.56 trillion rupiah — 1.61 trillion rupiah from plastic bags, 6.25 trillion rupiah from drinks and 15.7 trillion rupiah from vehicles, she said.
By Natasha Li / Staff reporterGross output from the domestic manufacturing sector took another heavy hit last quarter as it contracted 6.6 percent year-on-year to NT$3.37 trillion (US$111.77 billion), data released yesterday by the Ministry of Economic Affairs showed. Traditional manufacturing industries were the primary drivers of the sector’s decline, as they continue to face dwindling market demand due to flailing raw material prices, the ministry said. The base metal industry last quarter declined 15.76 percent in gross output to NT$320.5 billion, but the sector perform better this quarter, as the government plans to launch large construction projects this year, she said. In the tech sector, gross output from the electronics components industry declined 4.14 percent to NT$953.6 billion, dragged down by shrinking market demand for LCD panels and ICs. Those sector’s gross output surged 17.95 percent to NT$214 billion, thanks to production expansion by returning companies.
By Hsu Jen-hui 徐仁輝The COVID-19 outbreak has triggered panic buying of masks in Taiwan. Starting on Feb. 6, the government centralized the distribution of masks and imposed a limit of two per person per week. Despite the restrictions, Taiwan does not have the capacity to domestically produce sufficient masks to meet demand. Contrast this with distressing reports from China of hostility and discrimination toward people from Wuhan — the epicenter of the outbreak — by their fellow citizens. Some people who are worried that the virus would cause a full-scale epidemic in Taiwan have selfishly chosen to stockpile masks.
By Lydia KhalilSince 2018, large anti-government protests — what some term the Arab Spring 2.0 — have reverberated across the Middle East. As a result, the authorities in these countries have turned to the example of the region’s more authoritarian governments, such as Egypt and Saudi Arabia. For these countries’ leaders, the permissive media and information environment was responsible for the protests that rocked the Arab world in 2011. Security officials arrested three journalists, claiming that Mada Masr had spread false information and had links to the Muslim Brotherhood (which the government considers a terrorist organization). In truth, the government conducted the raid to discredit Mada Masr after it published an unflattering article about al-Sisi’s son, Mahmoud.
By William Hetherington / Staff writer, with CNAAs COVID-19 continues to spread, some medical supplies manufacturers have begun seeing success in marketing “fashionable” masks. Watsons Hong Kong then contacted him through Facebook to ask about selling the masks in their stores, Chang said. Within three days the masks appeared on store shelves in Hong Kong, Chang said. Hsieh wore one of the company’s masks on stage during a televised Lunar New Year event that year, and the company handed out 1,000 masks to audience members, he said. “Five years ago who had ever heard of ‘fashionable face masks,’ but now we have defined it,” he said.
AFP, NEW YORKUS retail giant Walmart Inc did not have a merry Christmas as disappointing toy and clothing sales hit the chain’s bottom line, the company said on Tuesday. However, the retailer, which is a staple for low-income households, saw sales slow in the fourth quarter ended Jan. 31. Global revenue increased 2.1 percent to US$141.7 billion in the quarter, falling below expectations of US$142.5 billion. “The fourth quarter was not our best,” McMillon told analysts on a conference call. Even with the disappointing results, Walmart posted a 12.3 percent gain in net income to US$4.1 billion in the quarter, with a 123 percent surge for the full year to just shy of US$15 billion.
By Chen Yu-fu and William Hetherington / Staff reporter, with staff writerCitizen Congress Watch (CCW) yesterday met with Legislative Speaker You Si-kun (游錫堃) to push for increased transparency and professionalism in the Legislative Yuan, the legislative watchdog said. You said that the legislature could consider developing an improved version of the Parliament Broadcast IVOD service, which provides live broadcasts of legislative sessions, as well as archived recordings of past sessions. The most important issue discussed at the meeting was the need for legislative professionalism, and the legislature’s right of consent to the appointment of personnel, You said. You said he had asked Legislative Yuan Secretary-General Lin Chih-chia (林志嘉) to look into improving the parliamentary broadcast service. “Without a good legislature, there is no good nation,” Wu said, adding that he hoped the legislature would continue working toward national reform.
ReutersBeijing threatened to retaliate against Czech companies with operations in China if a senior Czech lawmaker went ahead with a planned visit to Taiwan, according to a diplomatic letter seen by reporters. “Czech companies whose representatives visit Taiwan with Chairman Kubera will not be welcome in China or with the Chinese people,” the letter said. The Czech president’s spokesman confirmed the office had received the letter, but did not comment on its content. Zeman and Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis had expressed concern that Kubera’s planned visit would lead China to retaliate against the nation’s business community. Czech senators yesterday elected Czech Senator Milos Vystrcil to succeed Kubera as speaker.
More than a year after the nationwide protests fizzled out, Gnassingbe’s grip appears as solid as ever. “Every time we use violence in order to oppose ... it is always Togo that loses out,” the president told the crowd of thousands. However, in reality, Sokode is a city still under lockdown. Civil groups backed by charity Catholic Relief Services are nonetheless looking to build on the fragile peace in the city. We are trying to build a climate of peace before and after,” Bishop of Sokode Celestin-Marie Gaoua said.
By Lee I-chia / Staff reporterThe Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday announced the nation’s 23th confirmed case of COVID-19 and said that Taiwanese passengers on the virus-stricken Diamond Princess cruise ship in Yokohama, Japan, would likely return home on a charter flight tomorrow. There were 24 Taiwanese passengers and crew on board, Deputy Minister of Health and Welfare Ho Chi-kung (何啟功) said. Minister of Transportation and Communications Lin Chia-lung (林佳龍) yesterday confirmed that CAL is ready to dispatch a charter flight to Yokohama to bring back Taiwanese from the Diamond Princess. “It has been confirmed that the charter flight will depart from Tokyo Haneda International Airport. The charter flight can land either at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport or Taipei International Airport [Songshan airport],” he said.