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Home The News News Tsai sets policy goals for new Cabinet

Tsai sets policy goals for new Cabinet

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Outgoing Premier Lin Chuan, left, sits next to Tainan Mayor William Lai, who is to take over as premier on Friday,at the Presidential Office in Taipei yesterday.
Photo: CNA

President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) yesterday announced the appointment of a new premier and outlined seven major policy goals for the new Cabinet, including the 5+2 Transformation Plan.

Tsai officially announced that Tainan Mayor William Lai (賴清德) would be the new premier, replacing Premier Lin Chuan (林全).

Lin assumed office on May 20 last year.

Tsai said she is confident Lai has a good understanding of public opinion and would be able to rapidly respond to the needs of people across the nation.

“We have seen his executive capability,” she said of Lai, a highly rated lawmaker from 1999 to 2010.

Lai was elected Tainan mayor in 2010 and won a second term four years later with 72.9 percent of the vote, the highest-ever in a mayoral election since 1987, when martial law was lifted in the nation.

Tsai told a news conference that the focus of the incoming Cabinet would switch from “planning” to “execution.”

She outlined seven key tasks for “premier Lai,” with a focus on the continued implementation of the 5+2 Transformation Plan, referring to five “pillar industries” — the Internet of Things (also dubbed Asian Silicon Valley), biotechnology, “green” energy, smart machinery and defense — plus high-value agriculture and a circular economy.

The government is counting on the program to boost innovation, transform the nation’s industrial structure, create well-paid employment opportunities and promote more balanced regional development.

Other major policy goals mentioned by Tsai include the efficient promotion of the Forward-looking Infrastructure Development Program, as well as continued efforts to improve labor safety and work conditions, while maintaining workforce flexibility in the industrial manufacturing sector during the economic transformation.

Tsai said she hoped “Lai’s Cabinet” would implement energy policy plans to ensure stable power supply and build a nuclear-free homeland, complete tax and other ongoing reform plans, accelerate implementation of the long-term care and childcare programs, and reinforce comprehensive planning for national development.

The president reiterated her expectations that Lai’s team would ensure all programs remain on schedule and within budget to prevent financial waste.

“Premier Lin has laid the foundation for all these tasks and now we are counting on Mayor Lai, the future premier, to accelerate reforms and build up the nation,” Tsai said.

The Cabinet is expected to resign en masse tomorrow, with Lai expected to take over as premier the following day, according to sources in the Presidential Office.

Lai yesterday sent a letter to his city government team, saying that no matter what position he holds, all his hard work is for Taiwan.

Lai thanked his colleagues at the Tainan City Government for their support and bade farewell to them in the letter.

As Tainan mayor, he has treated the city’s residents as his family, and has been devoted to finding problems and sorting them out to improve the city’s environment, he wrote.

Lai also wrote of his accomplishments as mayor, including drawing up a balanced city budget for 2018, flood control and establishing a complete city transportation network.

With Lai leaving his mayoral post soon, questions have arisen as to how the position should be filled.

Lai’s term as mayor is to expire on Dec. 25 next year, Ministry of the Interior Civil Affairs Director Lin Ching-chi (林清淇) said.

As his remaining tenure is less than half of his four-year term, the position should be filled by an acting mayor appointed by the Executive Yuan, Lin Ching-chi said.

The Local Government Act (地方制度法) states that a by-election is required only when a mayor resigns during the first half of their tenure.


Source: Taipei Times - 2017/09/06



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