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Survey: almost 80% Japanese have positive impression of Taiwan

Radio Taiwan International
Date: 07 January, 2021
By: Stas Butler

A similar survey in Japan last year found that 90% of respondents had a negative impression of China. (Photo: Unsplash)

Nearly four in five Japanese respondents to a recent poll have expressed a positive view of Taiwan. The survey found that 78% of respondents ‘felt close’ to Taiwan, while 68% described Taiwan as ‘trustworthy’.

A similar survey in Japan last year found that 90% of respondents had a negative impression of China.

Respondents gave a number of reasons for their positive feelings towards Taiwan. These included: the friendliness of Taiwanese people, the countries’ shared history, and the fact that many Taiwanese can speak Japanese.

Responses also praised Taiwan’s cuisine and its effective response to the COVID-19 pandemic.    [FULL  STORY]

Little Big Women: Netflix to stream Taiwan box office hit
Date: 07, Jan 2021
By: Staff Reporter

Netflix has nabbed the rights to stream Little Big Women, Taiwan’s highest-grossing box office film of 2020. The movie, which stars Golden Horse Awards winner Chen Shu-fang, Hsieh Ying-xuan (Dear Ex), Vivian Hsu and Sun Ke-fang, is based on director Joseph Chen-chieh Hsu’s personal experience.

It tells the story of how a family grapples with and eventually accepts the fact that their recently deceased grandfather was having an affair, exploring how the grandmother overcomes this grudge and learns to accept the other woman. Diving into how a generation of women free themselves from the confines of traditional family values, the film shines a light on how people experience betrayal and pain and ultimately find reconciliation.

Joseph Chen-chieh Hsu explained: “The overarching theme of Little Big Women is the process of gradually putting things to rest; I am confident that people from all corners of the world can empathize with issues involving life and death and the resentment and grudges that we experience.”

Chen Shu-fang, who was named Best Leading Actress at the 57th Golden Horse Awards – making her the most senior actress to have won this award in Taiwan’s film history – added: “Taiwanese women are best described as persevering and responsible. I am delighted for the world to watch Little Big Women and to show everyone how the Taiwanese woman holds a family together.”    [FULL STORY]

Taiwan coffee shop owner returns trash to litterbug by mail

Coastal scenic spot in Keelung overwhelmed by garbage bags left by random drivers

Taiwan News
Date: 2021/01/07
By: Ching-Tse Cheng, Taiwan News, Staff Writer

Surveillance footage shows a man throwing away garbage near Waimushan. (Keelung Environmental Protection Bureau photo) 

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A coffee shop owner in the northern Taiwanese city of Keelung said Wednesday (Jan. 6) that he once sent a bag of trash back to the individual who left it near the Waimushan Fishing Harbor to deter littering in the area.

Despite the presence of surveillance cameras, residents near the popular coastal scenic spot have reported over 100 cases of drivers throwing garbage out of their windows in the last 12 months. The garbage not only emits unbearable smells but also attracts stray dogs.

Residents of the neighborhood said they are extremely troubled by the frequent littering. They added that many litterers persist even after being warned.

A coffee shop owner surnamed Chang (張) told media that he once spent NT$100 (US$3.6) to mail a bag of trash back to the offender after finding his address on a piece of paper inside the bag. He said he was fed up with socially irresponsible people who litter in public places.    [FULL  STORY]

Two migrant workers injured in factory accident; 1 in critical condition

Focus Taiwan
Date: 01/07/2021
By: Huang Li-yun and Chiang Yi-ching

CNA file photo (for illustrative purpose only)

Taipei, Jan. 7 (CNA) Two Vietnamese migrant workers were injured, one of them critically, in an accident Thursday at a coffee bean factory in Taipei, where they are employed.

Firefighters were called in at 4:16 p.m., when the two employees became caught in a coffee bean mixing machine at the factory.

One of the workers was rescued and had non-life threatening injuries, but when the other was pulled out of the machine at 5:50 p.m., he had no vital signs, according to the rescue team.

The critically injured migrant worker, 28 years old, was undergoing emergency treatment at a hospital, as of press time.    [FULL  STORY]

Battery exchange robbed five times since opening

Taipei Times
Date: .Jan 08, 2021
By: Huang Shu-li and William Hetherington / Staff reporter, with staff writer

Hsieh Wen-ta, an environmental campaigner and footstool and curtain maker, holds a cushioned footstool at his kiosk in Yunlin County on Tuesday.
Photo: Huang Shu-li, Taipei Times

An environmentalist in Yunlin County who makes cushioned footstools for people to buy with used batteries has been robbed five times in six months, he said on Tuesday.

Environmental campaigner Hsieh Wen-ta (謝彣達), 58, who runs a 24-hour self-serve kiosk in Yunlin County, said that people have stolen from the stall five times in the six months since it opened, taking more than 50 footstools and prying open the register on several occasions.

Hsieh has been making footstools and curtains for nearly 30 years, and thought that running a 24-hour kiosk would make it easier for people to recycle their batteries and pick up the products in exchange when he was not available, he said.

“Even the batteries that had been recycled and the plastic bins for collecting them were stolen,” he said, asking that thieves leave the kiosk alone.

Taipei exhibition features indie album cover art

Taipei Times
Date: Jan 05, 2021
By: Staff writer, with CNA

A selection of indie album cover designs are displayed at the at UU Mouth coworking space in Taipei on Saturday.
Photo: CNA

An exhibition featuring the covers of albums released independently or by indie record labels opened in Taipei on Sunday.

The exhibits display the use of illustration and comics in cover design in Taiwan, the organizer said.

Many indie bands put a priority on the design of their album cover to attract listeners, John Huang (黃俊豪), curator of “Taiwan Record Printing Exhibition — Indie Music Expressed in Comics and Illustrations,” said at the opening of the free event.

“I noticed that because many musicians themselves are designers and illustrators, they create their album [covers] on their own. It is a growing trend,” said Huang, a long-time industry observer.    [FULL  STORY]

Chinese Billionaire Jack Ma Suspected Missing, Hasn’t Been Seen In Two Months

Daily Caller
Date: January 04, 2021
By: Michael Ginsberg

REUTERS/Charles Platiau/File Photo

Chinese tech entrepreneur Jack Ma is suspected missing after not appearing in public since October 2020, according to Taiwan News.

The mogul was last seen on October 24 at the Bund Financial Summit in Shanghai, where he gave a speech criticizing what he perceived as a lack of risk-taking in Chinese and European economic development. “There is not a financial system in China actually. In reality, what China is facing is the risk of the lack of a financial system,” he said, according to a translation published by the Hong Kong newspaper Apple Daily.

Ma also offered light criticism of Chinese President and Communist Party General Secretary Xi Jinping. “President Xi once said, ‘success does not have to hinge on me.’ I understand this saying as describing a kind of responsibility… However, real innovation must be trailblazing and undertaken by those with commitment. For innovation must entail mistakes,” Ma added.

After giving the speech, Ma has all but disappeared from public view. His last post on the Chinese social media platform Weibo was on October 17, a week before the financial summit, according to Taiwan News.   [FULL  STORY]

Taiwan activates 10-second earthquake alert system

Weather authorities work with NEC in developing disaster mitigation warning apparatus

Taiwan News
Date: 2021/01/04
By: Huang Tzu-ti, Taiwan News, Staff Writer

CWB, NEC team up to deploy undersea cable network (NEC Taiwan website image)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan has put in place an earthquake alert system that can give a warning 10 seconds in advance of an imminent tremor in the nation's eastern regions.

As a result of a collaboration between the Central Weather Bureau (CWB) and NEC Taiwan, the newly designed mechanism will allow for a 10-second emergency response before a quake and an alert 20- to 30-minutes ahead of an ensuing tsunami, according to the company. NEC is a Japanese multinational providing IT and network solutions.

The system involves the laying of a 620-km fiber-optic cable network along coastal areas of eastern Taiwan that connects Yilan in the north with Taitung and Pingtung in the east and south, respectively. The deepest part of the network lies some 5,800 meters beneath the sea, exceeding the elevation of Taiwan’s highest mountain, Mount Jade, which stands at 3,952 meters.

Four Chinese military planes enter Taiwan’s ADIZ

Focus Taiwan
Date: 01/04/2021
By: Sherry Hsiao / Staff reporter

A Y-8 anti-submarine aircraft / Photo courtesy of the MND

Taipei, Jan. 4 (CNA) Four Chinese military aircraft entered Taiwan's southwest air defense identification zone (ADIZ) on Monday, the third consecutive day on which such an incursion has occurred, according to Taiwan's Ministry of National Defense (MND).

The planes involved were a Y-8 electronic warfare plane, a Y-8 anti-submarine aircraft, a Y-8 tactical reconnaissance plane and a Y-9 electronic warfare aircraft, the MND said.

The Air Force responded by scrambling fighter jets to monitor the Chinese aircraft, issuing radio warnings and mobilizing air defense assets until the planes left the ADIZ, it added.

Better policing of lead risks needed: advocates

CHILDREN MOST VULNERABLE: A survey found that the levels of lead in paint on equipment at some playgrounds were substantially higher than the national standard

Taipei Times
Date: Jan 05, 2021
By: Sherry Hsiao / Staff reporter

From left, Linkou Chang Gung Memorial Hospital Emergency Department director of pediatrics Lee Jung, New Power Party Legislator Claire Wang, researcher Chao Jui-kuang and Taiwan Zero Waste Alliance founder Sun Wei-tzu hold a news conference in Taipei yesterday.
Photo: CNA

After a survey found excessive levels of lead in playground equipment, advocates yesterday called for increased government regulation, as well as public awareness, of potential lead exposure from painted surfaces.

While public discussion about the dangers of heavy metals has often been focused on food safety, attention has seldom been drawn to the risks of heavy metals in playground equipment, New Power Party Legislator Claire Wang (王婉諭) told a news conference in Taipei.

Taiwan Zero Waste Alliance founder Sun Wei-tzu (孫瑋孜) said that a survey he conducted with researchers at Tainan Community University found that the levels of lead in the paint on playground equipment in some parks and schools in Taipei and New Taipei City were significantly higher than the maximum 90 parts per million stipulated in the National Standards of the Republic of China.

Chao Jui-kuang (晁瑞光), a researcher who is part of the university’s environmental action team, said that in Tainan, the survey found that while newer playground facilities generally met national standards, the paint on other equipment that might not be designed for children to play with, but was installed near play areas, such as street lamps, contained high levels of heavy metals that exceeded permissible limits.