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Taiwanese airlines transport record number of passengers

Radio Taiwan International
Date: 20 January, 2020
By: Leslie Liao

CAA head Lin Kuo-Shian

Taiwanese airlines carried more passengers than ever in 2019. That was the word from Taiwan’s Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) head Lin Kuo-shian on Monday. Lin was speaking at an event to mark the 73rd anniversary of the CAA.

Lin said that domestic flights carried a total of 12.24 million travelers, while nearly 11 million journeys were completed on cross-strait flights. All other international destinations accounted for 48.83 million travelers, while 340,000 people transferred in Taiwan to other destinations.

In total, domestic airlines completed 580,000 individual flights, carrying 72.16 million passengers. Cargo flights transported about 2.31 million tons of cargo.      [FULL  STORY]

China monitored US warship during Taiwan Strait transit

Navy Times
Date: January 20, 2020
By: The Associated Press

Seaman Marshall Key reports contact during a Thursday transit of the Taiwan Strait on board the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser Shiloh. (Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Chanel L. Turner/Navy)

Seaman Marshall Key reports contact during a Thursday transit of the Taiwan Strait on board the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser Shiloh. (Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Chanel L. Turner/Navy)

BEIJING — Here’s a look at recent developments in the South China Sea, where China is pitted against smaller neighbors in multiple territorial disputes over islands, coral reefs and lagoons.

The waters are a major shipping route for global commerce and are rich in fish and possible oil and gas reserves.


China says it monitored the passage of a U.S. Navy ship through the Taiwan Strait last week, just days after the island’s pro-independence president won reelection.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said Friday that China had been "fully aware" of and "following closely the whole process."    [FULL  STORY]

‘Real Friends, Real Progress’: AIT recognizes Taiwan as true US friend

AIT Director Brent Christensen reaffirms people-to-people ties as main goal for AIT in 2020

Taiwan News
Date: 2020/01/20
By: Chris Chang, Taiwan News, Staff Reporter

Director Brent Christensen leads panelists to celebrate AIT’s 40th anniversary in Taiwan. (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) wrapped up celebrations for its 40th year in Taiwan with the Digital Dialogue Public Forum on Friday (Jan. 17).

In his opening address, AIT Director Brent Christensen praised U.S. and Taiwan relations, saying they are sincerely invested in each other’s success and announced "Real Friends, Real Progress" as the theme for AIT in 2020.

The forum, led by minister without portfolio Audrey Tang (唐鳳) and panelists, gathered opinions through an online discussion board, about how to strengthen U.S.-Taiwan bonds and facilitate exchanges between the two nations.

The first focus was on Taiwan's language policies. It was suggested that Taiwan should accelerate its pace to become a bilingual nation.    [FULL  STORY]

Former Taipei mayor announces run for KMT chairman

Focus Taiwan
Date: 01/20/2020
By: Wang Cheng-chung and Chiang Yi-ching

Taipei, Jan. 20 (CNA) Former Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌) said Monday that he will run for

CNA file photo

chairman of the main opposition Kuomintang (KMT), making him the third person to announce their candidacy.

National Taiwan University Professor Chang Ya-chung (張亞中) and Blue Sky Action Alliance Chairman Wu Chih-chang (武之璋) have also said they will vie for the post.

Former Chairman Wu Den-yih (吳敦義) stepped down on Jan. 15 following the party's defeat in the Jan. 11 presidential and legislative elections, and an election to select his successor will be held March 7.

In the Facebook post announcing his run, Hau, a former KMT vice chairman as well as Taipei mayor from 2006 to 2014, outlined the three guiding principles for reforms he would undertake if elected.    [FULL  STORY]

NHRI researchers make key lung cancer finding

A STEP FORWARD: The team found that inhibiting the succinate levels in mice increased their survival rate and that succinate levels could be used as a biomarker

Taipei Times
Date: Jan 21, 2020
By: Lee I-chia  /  Staff reporter

The National Health Research Institutes (NHRI) yesterday said it had discovered that succinate

From left, Tri-Service General Hospital physicians Hsu Yu-Juei and Huang Tsai-wang, National Health Research Institutes (NHRI) Secretary-General Wu Shiow-ing, NHRI Institute of Cellular and System Medicine director Lin Hsiu-fang and associate researcher Kuo Cheng-chin, and research team member Wu Jing-yiing give the thumbs up at a news conference at the Ministry of Health and Welfare in Taipei yesterday.
Photo: Wu Liang-yi, Taipei Times

levels in blood serum could serve as a potential biomarker for lung cancer progression, and that inhibiting succinate levels might reduce the risk of lung cancer metastasis.

NHRI Institute of Cellular and System Medicine associate researcher Kuo Cheng-chin (郭呈欽) said that cancer has been the most common cause of death in Taiwan for many years.

Among them, non-small cell lung cancer has a relatively poor prognosis, he said.

As there is no effective screening method for non-small cell lung cancer, patients are usually diagnosed in the later stages, he added.    [FULL  STORY]

Kaohsiung draws fire over publication cover

PROMOTION: A borough warden said the image was unsuitable, but a city official said it suited the issue’s theme, which echoed Kaohsiung’s image as a port city

Taipei Times
Date: Jan 20, 2020
By: Chen Wen-chan and Dennis Xie  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

The Kaohsiung City Government on Saturday drew criticism from city residents for its use of a

Taiwanese TV talk show host Li Jing is featured on the cover of the December issue of the Kaohsiung City Government’s monthly publication.
Photo: Copied by Chen Wen-chan, Taipei Times

photograph of Taiwanese TV talk show host Li Jing (利菁) on the cover of a monthly publication.

“At first glance, I almost mistook the publication for an erotic photo album, because Li is nearly naked, with only a thin piece of cloth on her body,” said Liao Chun-hua (廖春花), warden of Nansing Borough (南興) in Fengshan District (鳳山).

The publication should feature policies, development projects and tourism in the city, rather than an image of Li covered in sheer fabric, which is irrelevant and inappropriate, Liao said.

Neither the magazine nor the celebrities who had been chosen to promote city tourism over the past few months represent local culture, New Power Party Kaohsiung City Councilor Huang Jie (黃捷) said.    [FULL  STORY]

Comparing China’s and Taiwan’s aid to the Pacific

Date: January 20, 2020
By: Denghua Zhang

In September 2019, after 36 years, Solomon Islands severed its diplomatic relations with the Republic of China (hereafter Taiwan) and established formal relations with the People’s Republic of China (hereafter China). A Solomon Islands parliamentary bipartisan task force had reviewed relations with China and Taiwan and recommended the diplomatic switch, arguing that ‘Solomon Islands should not bet on Taiwan’s assistance’ and that ‘Solomon Islands stands to benefit a lot if it switches and normalise diplomatic relations with PRC’. Clearly foreign aid is a central theme in the diplomatic game. But how does aid from China and Taiwan compare, especially to the Pacific Island countries (PICs)?

Chinese and Taiwanese aid and foreign policy

In response to growing concerns about Chinese aid, China’s State Council released two white papers on foreign aid in 2011 and 2014 that provide a brief history of Chinese aid and the volume of aid granted between 1950 (the year Chinese aid started) and 2012. However, there is no breakdown of aid spending by year and recipient country. China does not have a comprehensive law covering its foreign aid. Instead, a handful of regulations pertains to Chinese aid delivery, especially the Measures for the Administration of Foreign Aid, adopted in 2018.

In 2009, Taiwan issued its first and only white paper on foreign aid, in an effort to increase aid transparency and accountability. In 2010, Taiwan passed the Act for the Establishment of the International Cooperation and Development Fund to guide aid delivery.

In terms of aid volume, Chinese aid to PICs totalled US$1.05 billion between 2011 and 2016, which is nearly four times Taiwan’s cumulative aid (US$271 million). However, given the larger populations of the Pacific states that recognise China, the per capita aid spending of China in the Pacific is US$108, which is less than half of Taiwan’s per capita aid spending (US$237) in the region.   [FULL  STORY]

Two Ang Lee movies rated among 100 greatest

'Brokeback Mountain' ranks No. 54, 'Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon' ranks No. 90

Taiwan News
Date: 2020/01/19
By: Chris Chang, Taiwan News, Staff Writer

Academy-award winning director Ang Lee. (AP photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The British film magazine Empire has honored the Academy-award winning Taiwanese director Ang Lee (李安) for his two extraordinary films, "Brokeback Mountain" and "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon," in The 100 Greatest Movies of the 21st Century.

Lee won his first Oscar for Best International Feature Film "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" back in 2001. The movie ranked No. 90 on The Greatest Movies list. Empire praised the movie for making "wuxia (武俠) accessible to the contemporary Western audience, a genre which was largely the preserve of lower video store shelves on clumsily-dubbed fuzzy VHS tapes before 2000."

Lee's "Brokeback Mountain" helped him win his first Academy Award for Best Director and is ranked No. 54 on the list. The film depicts the awe-inspiring scenery of the Rocky Mountains and was seen as a stepping stone to bring queer cinema to the mainstream.    [FULL  STORY]

Cross-strait standoff unlikely to end in Tsai’s 2nd term: U.S. scholar

Focus Taiwan
Date: 01/19/2020
By: Chou Shih-hui and Joseph Yeh

Larry Diamond, a professor of sociology and political science at Stanford University. Image taken from

San Francisco, Jan. 19 (CNA) China is unlikely to back down from its hardline stance against Taiwan in the wake of the Jan. 11 general elections that resoundingly gave Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) a second term, according to an American scholar.

Larry Diamond, a professor of sociology and political science at Stanford University and a senior fellow at the school's Hoover Institution, told CNA in a recent interview that the Chinese communists never seem to learn from history, despite the lessons that intimidation against Taiwan "will not work."

Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) has been a "calamitous failure" as leader of his country, and the Taiwan election results were the latest indication of that, but there are no signs that the Chinese communists are waking up to reality, said Diamond, who was one of the foreign observers in Taiwan during the election.

"As a result, I predict more tensions and intimidation ahead and the need for strong nerves, clear resolve, and sustained partnership between the U.S. and Taiwan to defend the sovereignty and security of the Republic of China, Taiwan," he said.    [FULL  STORY]

New line might officially begin service this month

DIRECT COMMUTE: The circular line would allow New Taipei City residents to travel around the city without having to transfer in Taipei, reducing commute times

Taipei Times
Date: Jan 20, 2020
By: Staff Writer, with CNA

The first section of the Taipei MRT circular line might officially begin operations before the end of this

People line up to ride a circular line train at the Banqiao MRT Station in New Taipei City yesterday.
Photo: CNA

month, although a date has yet to be determined, New Taipei City Mayor Hou You-yi (侯友宜) said yesterday.

A launch date would be decided when Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) returns from Europe on Wednesday, Hou said.

He made the remarks during an inspection tour of the first section of the line, which began free trial runs yesterday.

The line is to serve Taipei and New Taipei City when all sections are completed.    [FULL  STORY]