Taiwan News: Advances in Personal Data Protection, Corruption in Yunlin

Taiwan News: Advances in Personal Data Protection, Corruption in Yunlin
Photo Credit: Depositphotos

What you need to know

Your daily bulletin of Taiwan news, courtesy of ICRT.

The National Development Council (NDC) has established a new centralized office responsible for coordinating personal data protection issues between government agencies.

According to the council, the office will be in charge of personal data protection and it plans to seek an "adequacy decision" from the European Union based on the EU's General Data Protection Regulation, which became applicable in all EU member states in May.

That regulation outlines a strict personal data protection legal framework and regulates the processing by individuals, companies or an organizations of personal data relating to individuals within the EU.

An adequacy decision is defined as "A decision adopted by the European Commission on the basis of Directive 95/46/EC, which establishes that a non-EU country ensures an adequate level of protection of personal data by reason of its domestic law or the international commitments it has entered into. The effect of such a decision is that personal data can flow from all EU States and the European Economic Area member countries (Norway, Liechtenstein and Iceland) to that non-EU country, without any further safeguards."

NDC head Chen Mei-ling visited the EU at the end of May to discuss Taiwan's willingness to seek an adequacy decision.

And Chen said the office will hold additional talks with the EU after it releases a report on the assessment of Taiwan's request for an adequacy decision.

Previously, no single body was responsible for the management of personal data protection in Taiwan, which resulted in problems related to inter-ministry coordination.

-----------------

The Supreme Court has sentenced former Yunlin County Magistrate Chang Jung-wei to eight years in prison for corruption, and stripped him of his civil rights for half that term.

Chang was arrested in December 2004 for accepting more than NT$30 million (US$982,000) in bribes in connection with a NT$3-billion incinerator project in Linnei Township in Yunlin Country.

He was indicted by the Yunlin District Prosecutors' Office in January of 2005 and prosecutors had been seeking a life sentence.

The Yunlin District Court sentenced him to 14 years in October that same year. However, he was found not guilty on appeal, but that ruling was later reversed.

The Supreme Court Wednesday rejected a final appeal by Chang and handed down its final verdict.

Former Linnei Mayor Chen Ho-shan was also sentenced to eight years in prison by the court for his role in the corruption case, which was also a final verdict.

---------------

The Consumer Protection Association has confirmed that over 4,000 people involved in a class action suit against edible oil maker Chang Guann will receive the compensation they were promised.

The association says it has now received NT$24 million from the auction of Chang Guann's assets and that will be sent to the 4,048 plaintiffs by the end of July.

The compensation payments come after more three years of litigation.

According to the Consumer Protection Association, the plaintiffs are students and teachers from 22 kindergartens and schools that used cooking oil provided by Chang Guann that had been produced with oil recycled from restaurant waste and animal byproducts in a 2014 scandal.

The plaintiffs filed the class action suit against the edible oil maker with the help of the association after the cooking oil scandal broke out in 2014.

Chang Guann Chairman Yeh Wen-xiang was sentenced to 22 years in prison by the Taiwan High Court in 2016 for fraud and violating the Act Governing Food Safety and Sanitation. He was hospitalized in 2017 after an apparent suicide bid following the Supreme Court's decision to reject his appeal.

Chang Guann General Manager Dai Qi-chuan was sentenced to 18 years in prison in the same case.

--------------------

5abb827f7fa3c
Photo Credit: Wiki Commons
Taiwan's Second Nuclear Power Plant in New Taipei's Wanli District.

The Atomic Energy Council says Taiwan Power Co. (Taipower), the country's state-owned power provider, is still investigating the cause of a reactor malfunction at the Second Nuclear Power Plant in New Taipei's Wanli District.

The first reactor at the plant developed a mechanical failure Tuesday, with the alarm on its process radiation monitor sounding for 13 minutes.

According to the council, an initial investigation indicates the incident was caused by an internal leak at the safety relief valve linking the plant's backwash receiving tank when the water purification system was transferring resin to the tank.

Analysis of air samples collected at five locations around the plant shows that the level of radioactive release remains normal in the compound and the hourly ambient gamma radiation dose within the plant is also normal.

It is the latest incident at the nuclear power plant since its No. 2 reactor resumed operations on June 13 after being taken offline for a safety inspection.

---------------------

The Tourism Bureau has released figures indicating that the island saw a decline in inbound tourism revenue last year despite record-high foreign visitor arrivals.

According to the bureau, revenue from international tourism fell by 7.92 percent in 2017 due mainly to a decline in the consumption power of tourists from China and Japan.

Figures show the average daily spending by Chinese tourists dropped by US$14 per person, while the spending power of Japanese visitors fell by US$27.

The decline is spending by tourists from China is being attributed to moves by Beijing to restrict shopping tours and limit expenditure on food and personal items while fewer Japanese travelers chose to stay in luxury hotels during their visits to Taiwan.

However, buying power increased among South Korean visitors and those from countries targeted by the New Southbound Policy, a scheme to improve ties with countries in Southeast Asia and South Asia, rose in 2017.

Visitor arrivals to Taiwan in 2017 totaled 10.74 million.

------------------------

The Taoyuan International Airport Corporation has said data shows increasing contacts between Taiwan and countries targeted by the government's New Southbound Policy.

Company Chairman Ceng Da-ren said the airport transported 10.19 million passengers to and from those countries last year, up 16.2 percent from 2016. According to Ceng, the airport has received 5.54 million passengers from those areas in the first six months of this year, a 9.8 percent increase from the same period of last year.

The airport also handled 400,000 tonnes of cargo with the 11 New Southbound countries that had aviation trade with Taiwan last year, which was about 20 percent of its total cargo volume and an increase of 10 percent from 2016.

The airport corporation chairman said as most of the cargo is being re-exported to third countries, Taiwan is fast becoming a key cargo transportation hub for the New Southbound countries.

---------------------

The Tourism Bureau has launched a new OhBear-liveried metro train in Los Angeles to promote tourism in Taiwan.

The train featuring images of the mascot of Taiwan's tourism industry will run on the city's Gold Line and Expo Line routes from this month until December.

The Tourism Bureau says it expects the brightly painted train to catch the eyes of an estimated 1 million commuters as it serves the greater Los Angeles area.

According to the head of Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Los Angeles, along with featuring OhBear, the train also highlights images of Taiwan's environment, culture and food.

--------------------

The son of late decathlete Yang Chuan-guang has donated his father's 1960 Olympic silver medal to the National Sports Training Center.

Known as the "Iron Man of Asia," Yang represented the Republic of China at the 1960 Rome Games and won the country's first-ever Olympic medal.

He died in 2007 aged 73.

National Sports Training Center Executive Officer Li Wen-bin says the medal will be placed in the center's hall of fame.

And Li said he believes it will serve as great encouragement and motivation to Taiwanese athletes preparing for the 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta, which begins on Aug. 18.

This news bulletin was provided courtesy of International Community Radio Taipei (ICRT), Taiwan’s leading English-language broadcaster.

TNL Editor: David Green


Tags: