ISSUE 119                                                                              December 2, 2021
Taiwan Weekly
Reliable report and analysis of the most important issues in Taiwan
In This Issue
● Featured Opinion:
● This Week in Taiwan: 
Other Important Events This Week


Mainland China Punishes "Taiwan Independence Patron"
Mainland China is taking punitive measures against so-called "patrons" of Taiwan independence, fining Taiwan's Far Eastern Group NT$2.06 billion (about US$74 million).
(Photo from: China Times)
Featured News

Mainland China Imposes Penalties on Pro-DPP Taiwanese Company

News Compiled by  Taiwan Weekly


Taiwan conglomerate Far Eastern Group’s investment in polyester and synthetic fiber and cement plants in mainland China was fined and taxed 474 million yuan (about US$74 million) for a number of violations. It was speculated that the mainland intends to punish pro-independence donors. Spokeswoman Zhu Fenglian of the Taiwan Affairs Office (TAO), State Council, indicated on November 24 that people who support Taiwan independence and undermine cross-strait relations will never be allowed to make money on the mainland.

read more

Featured Opinion
Hung Chi-chang, a founding member of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), believes that mainland China's persecuting Taiwan independence "patrons" will only intensify estrangement across the Taiwan Strait, which is detrimental to the peaceful development of cross-strait relations.
(Photo from: The Storm Media)

How Meaningful Is It to Punish the Patron?

By Hung Chi-chang

China Times, November 26, 2021


Mainland China has been rumored to punish "two-sided” Taiwanese business people as early as 2018. Spokeswoman Zhu Fenglian of the Taiwan Affairs Office (TAO) of the State Council stated that the mainland is taking a first hit against Taiwan’s Far Eastern Group recently "based on facts" and implementing “precision strikes." The expected aim was to ask Taiwanese business people at large to distinguish between right and wrong, take a firm stand, and draw a clear line with the separatist forces of Taiwan independence. According to the TAO, there is no room for ambiguity. But can the mainland's measures achieve its goal? Will the accidentally derived political, economic, and social effects worsen the estrangement between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait, and thus are even more detrimental to the peaceful development of cross-strait relations?

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Featured Opinion
In an opinion submission, Chairman Douglas Hsu of the Far Eastern Group expressed support for the "One China" principle and opposition to Taiwan independence. Unable to resolve the cross-strait dilemma, he hopes that leaders on both sides have the wisdom to maintain cross-strait peace.
(Photo from: United Daily News)

What Did the Fined Patron Say?

By Douglas Hsu

United Daily News, November 30, 2021


Recently, I read in Forbes a listing of the richest billionaires in 2021 in terms of net worth. This year, 2,755 individuals made the list, the largest number in history. The number of people from mainland China and Hong Kong is 698, while 47 people come from Taiwan. It shows the growing and declining of the economic strength of the two sides of the Taiwan Strait, and the progress of the mainland cannot be ignored.

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Featured Editorial
According to media commentary, the DPP administration used public resources to promote the government's position on the referendum questions, severely undermining administrative neutrality. Pictured above is Vice Premier Shen Jong-chin.
(Photo from: China Times)

Tsai Administration Undermines Administrative Neutrality

United Daily News Editorial , November 27, 2021


During office hours, Vice Premier Shen Jong-chin participated in a businessmen's meeting organized by the Aerospace Industrial Development Corporation (AIDC), a state-owned enterprise in Taiwan, drumming up support for the government's position on the four-question referendum which deal with referendum dates, pork imports, algal reef protection and nuclear energy. Though Vice Premier Shen undermined administrative neutrality, President Tsai Ing-wen called it "executive bodies as a whole". In addition, Premier Su Tseng-chang followed suit by saying that it was "perfectly justified". Moreover, Chairman Lee Chin-yung of the Central Election Commission (CEC) indicated that the Executive Yuan is the “opposed party” in the four-question referendum, so there was no such thing as breach of administrative neutrality. Deputy Minister of Justice Tsai Pi-chun said it was a dereliction of duty for a political appointee not to speak up when he or she should. It was also a wonder in a democracy that the Tsai administration have deliberately blurred the line between political and administrative responsibilities, treating administrative neutrality as if it were nothing.

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This Week in Taiwan
The Executive Yuan passed a special budget for procuring naval and air combat capabilities, set for a total of NT$237.3 billion (about US$8.5 billion), the largest item of which is a shore-based anti-submarine missile system plan.
(Photo from: Boeing Defense's Twitter)
November 22: In the early morning of November 21, a convenience store employee in Taoyuan was stabbed to death after persuading a customer to wear a mask, causing uproar across Taiwan. The suspect claimed to have a mental illness. There have been several incidents in Taiwan in the past three months that people dissatisfied with being reminded to wear masks hurt convenience store employees. The four major convenience store chains announced that they would no longer force customers to wear masks. 
November 22: There have been several public safety incidents lately, including assaults on convenience store employees in Taichung and Taoyuan, battery using a baseball bat, and shooting in New Taipei, which have callused public anxiety. In a Facebook post, President Tsai Ing-wen asked the Executive Yuan to review and strengthen policy measures. The Executive Yuan held a meeting on public safety, in which Premier Su Tseng-chang ordered that the government strengthen self-defense at convenience stores. Minister of the Interior Hsu Kuo-yung stated that the most convenient defense equipment are pepper water and pepper spray. 
November 24: The U.S. Department of State announced on November 23 President Joe Biden will hold the first global Summits for Democracy video conference from December 9 to 10 and invite government and civil organization leaders from 100 countries and regions, including Taiwan, Japan, and South Korea. China and Russia were not on the list of invitees. 
President Tsai will not participate. Instead, Ambassador Hsiao Bi-khim, representative to the United States, and Minister without Portfolio Audrey Tang will represent the government. 
November 24: A shooting and murder occurred in New Taipei on November 22. The suspect absconded to mainland China and is undergoing quarantine in an epidemic prevention hotel in Xiamen, Fujian Province. The Criminal Investigation Bureau, National Police Agency, Ministry of the Interior, contacted the Chinese authorities to request assistance in repatriation, but no response was received. Due to current cross-strait tensions and the near suspension of mutual criminal judicial assistance mechanisms, the number of repatriations from the mainland to Taiwan this year is zero.
November 25: The Legislative Yuan passed on November 23 in the third reading special regulations on procuring sea and air combat power enhancement arms. The Executive Yuan then passed a special budget for procuring naval and air combat capabilities, set for a total of NT$237.3 billion (about US$8.5 billion). The most expensive item is the shore-based anti-submarine missile system project, which costs NT$79.7 billion (about US$2.8 billion). 
November 25: The upcoming referendum is scheduled to be held on December 18. When visiting Taoyuan, President Tsai stated that the third natural gas receiving terminal of the CPC Corporation is not constructed atop algae reef, and that the algal reef ecosystem in the area has survived perpetually. Pan Chung-cheng, petitioner of the algae reef protection referendum question, criticized President Tsai for publicly disseminating false information, which is either ignorant or blatantly dishonest. 
November 26: President Tsai met with a Congressional delegation of the United States led by Representative Mark Takano, who is chair of the House Veterans' Affairs Committee, and stated that starting from January next year, the Veterans Affairs Council will station staff in Washington to further exchanges on employment counseling, medical care, and long-term senior care. 
November 26: The World Health Organization (WHO) named the latest variant of the coronavirus (COVID-19) from South Africa as Omicron. 
The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) announced that there is no case of Omicron in Taiwan, but for epidemic prevention, six countries including South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Lesotho, Eswatini, and Zimbabwe will be designated as key high-risk countries, entry to Taiwan from which would require centralized quarantine.
Taiwan Weekly is a newsletter released every week by Fair Winds Foundation, Association of Foreign Relations, and Taipei Forum which provides coverage and perspectives on the latest developments in Taiwan.

The conclusions and recommendations of any Taiwan Weekly article are solely those of its author(s) and do not reflect the views of the institutions that publish the newsletter.

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