Taiwan has set admirable goals for cleaning up soil and groundwater pollution. But are overly rigorous standards actually inhibiting site remediation? The CPC Corporation’s massive Kaohsiung refinery complex ceased operations in December 2015 as promised by the state-owned oil company in 1990 (when it was known as the Chinese Petroleum Corp.). Then Premier Hau Pei-tsun…

Taiwan’s government has ambitious goals for dramatically reducing its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in line with global standards. Although Taiwan is not a member of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and did not sign the Paris Accord, Taiwan has nevertheless developed its own plan to dramatically reduce its carbon footprint in…

LABOR LAW AMENDED During an 18-hour overnight session, the Legislative Yuan approved amendments to the highly controversial Labor Standards Act that the government promises will provide greater flexibility for both workers and employers but which labor activists argue will lead to abuse of labor rights. The amendments include changes to the overtime calculation, with overtime…

Recently Taiwan Business TOPICS magazine sat down with Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) Minister Lee Ying-yuan to discuss the state of Taiwan’s environmental health. Below is an edited transcript of that conversation, supplemented with written replies from the EPA.   What do you consider to be the biggest environmental challenges that Taiwan is currently facing? For…

THE ECONOMIC NEWS IS MOSTLY POSITIVE On November 17 economist Chen Shin-hui, assistant research fellow at the Center for Economic Forecasting, part of the Chung-Hua Institution for Economic Research (CIER), offered a lively presentation and discussion on the state of Taiwan’s and the world’s economy. As the compiler of CIER’s Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), a monthly…

FARGLORY FOUNDER FACES PRISON SENTENCE Farglory Group founder and chairman Chao Teng-hsiung is facing a 24-year prison sentence on charges of bribery and breach of trust involving several public construction projects. Following a four-month investigation. The Taipei District Prosecutors Office arrested 31 people including Chao, New Taipei City councilor Chou Sheng-kao, and Lee Shush-der, the Taipei…

Few technological advances have gained the world’s attention like the Internet of Things (IoT), defined by global analytics firm IDC as “a network of uniquely identifiable ‘things’ that communicate without human interaction using IP connectivity.” Some 13 billion connected devices are already in operation, used mostly in manufacturing, transportation, smart cities, and consumer applications, and…