1. The Tainan City Government wishes all women in Tainan City happy International Women’s Day
Tomorrow is International Women’s Day. I would like to thank all women for their devotion to their families and society. Your tender but firm strength motivates Tainan to become a better city. Again, on behalf of the Tainan City Government, I’d like to use this opportunity to wish everyone happy International Women’s Day.
2. The 2018 Taiwan International Orchid Show is unveiled, generating business opportunities for the orchid industry
(1) The 2018 Taiwan International Orchid Show (TIOS), one of the three major international orchid shows in the world, is currently being held at Houbi District’s Taiwan Orchid Plantation. Vice President Chen took time out of his busy schedule to attend the opening ceremony, further highlighting the significance of this event. I would like to thank the organizer, the Taiwan Orchid Growers Association (TOGA), for planning this event with such thoughtfulness. All departments within the Tainan City Government have worked together to ensure that visitors from all corners of Taiwan can fully enjoy every aspect of this major annual orchid show and to promote tourism in the Sinying region.
(2) The theme of the 2018 TIOS is “Sparkle Taiwan! In Orchid We Love.” The imagery of magnificent scenery and orchids were combined. The venue was decorated with pavilions, a seven-meter waterfall, a trail shouldered by orchids, and an installation recreating the historical Chinese game qushuiliushang (floating a wine goblet along a winding river), which was mentioned in renowned calligrapher Wang Xizhi’s masterpiece, Lantingji Xu. Walking through the venue creates the illusion of roaming through a shan shui painting. The Cultural Affairs Bureau also included the cultural imagery of Tainan’s door gods in the venue. A variety of orchids were combined with door god paintings created by six master craftsmen in Tainan. By merging a cultural element with the orchid industry, Tainan truly demonstrated its rich cultural heritage through the 2018 TIOS.
(3) I would like to thank the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA) for their assistance. Currently, representatives from 13 countries and 22 foreign buyers have been invited to participate in the 2018 TIOS, bringing business opportunities to Taiwan’s orchid industry. In addition, the Bureau of Economic Development has invited 30 suppliers to showcase more than 200 products derived from orchids. The Tainan City Government is certain that the 2018 TIOS will facilitate the expansion and applications of the orchid industry.
(4) The 2018 TIOS has captured the attention of various sectors since its opening ceremony, which renders its marketing successful. I urge the various departments of the Tainan City Government to maintain its administrative efficiency during the remaining duration of the 2018 TIOS, to guarantee the success of the orchid show.
3. The Tainan City Government has strengthened inspections of daily commodity prices to safeguard citizens’ rights
(1) Major domestic toilet paper suppliers have announced price hikes in toilet paper due to a rise in the cost of short fiber pulp, leading to large crowds swarming to purchase toilet paper. Consumer Ombudsman Officers from the Department of Legal Affairs have conducted inspections at hypermarkets in Tainan City, including RT-Mart, Carrefour, Costco, and PX Mart. Please be rest assured that hoarding behavior or illicit rise in prices was not found in these hypermarkets.
(2) The Executive Yuan made a public address earlier, stating that Taiwan's commodity prices have been relatively stable this year and that there is an ample supply of toilet paper in Taiwan. Therefore, no major fluctuations are expected, and toilet paper prices will remain reasonable. Most importantly, toilet paper is an end product, not a raw material; thus, increased toilet paper prices will not spur a hike in the prices of other commodities.
(3) The Tainan City Government will continue to keep a close watch on commodity prices, especially on whether there is a deliberate hike in toilet paper prices. The inspection results will be regularly reported to the Consumer Protection Committee and Fair Trade Commission. The Tainan City Government and the central government have joined efforts in striving to normalize transaction prices in the market and to prevent price fluctuations from affecting the public’s livelihood. I would also like to take this opportunity to tell all consumers to remain at ease; there is no need to hoard toilet paper.
1. The Bureau of Social Affairs’ report on the progress and working plan for promoting women’s benefits and rights in Tainan City (refer to written sources for details)
Decision: Approved for reference filing.
(1) Tainan City has a population of 1.88 million, with men and women each accounting for 50%. However, since 2017, the number of women in Tainan City has exceeded the number of men by roughly 2,000, and this number is continuing to grow. As demands for women’s benefits and services have grown increasingly diverse over recent years, the Bureau of Social Affairs has integrated resources form the public section and private sector to further develop women’s benefits, cultivate local women’s groups, and reinforce the daycare system and policies for guaranteeing women’s safety. In addition, the Tainan City Government regularly holds the Gender Equality Committee, where representatives from women’s groups, experts, and scholars lead the Tainan City Government in identifying women’s needs from different perspectives, which in turn safeguards women’s rights and enhances gender equality.
(2) The Bureau of Social Affairs offers comprehensive services designed for women, such as daycare, economic subsidies, personal safety protection, services for new immigrant women, and numerous education and self-development activities. A total 300 relevant events and programs were held last year, benefitting 450,000 persons. The achievements of these services are quite impressive. I would like to thank Director-General Liu and all staff members of the Bureau of Social Affairs for their efforts in promoting services for women.
(3) Promoting women’s benefits, safeguarding women’s rights, and enhancing gender equality are the most fundamental tasks for shaping a fair and just society. I would like to ask all departments in the Tainan City Government to utilize our strong foundation for women’s rights and work together to create and increase opportunities that guarantee equal developmental opportunities for women, thereby shaping Tainan City as a gender-friendly city.
(4) I would like to ask the Research, Development and Evaluation Commission and the Bureau of Social Affairs to evaluate the feasibility of establishing a women and children’s rights platform on the official website of the Tainan City Government.
2. The Cultural Affairs Bureau’s report on the results and prospects of Tainan City’s cultural development (refer to written sources for details)
Decision: Approved for reference filing.
(1) I would like to thank the Cultural Affairs Bureau's staff members for their devotion to promoting the cultural development and cultural events in Tainan City over the past few years. I would also like to thank the Finance and Local Tax Bureau, the Department of Budget, Accounting and Statistics, and concerned departments for their assistance in relevant matters. More than eight billion New Taiwan dollars have been allocated to the 20 cultural development projects mentioned in the report. The amount is NTD$14 billion when including funds for software and events (including subsidies from the central government). I would like to extend a special thanks to Premier Lai for his determination in shaping Tainan City as Taiwan’s Cultural Capital during his term as Mayor of Tainan City. In addition to the Tainan City Government, the central government and civilian groups also invested in the restoration of the Old Tainan District Court and the National Museum of Prehistory Tainan Branch. Renovation work on the West Market, the Old Tainan Prefecture Council, and the Old Tainan Joint Government Offices are examples of highly anticipated cultural development projects that are scheduled to take place in the future. There are several challenges that the Tainan City Government must address concerning these future projects: Firstly, tourist attractions surrounding the Old Tainan Watercourse, the Tsai-liao Fossil Museum, and Shuijiaoshe Cultural Park can be integrated and marketed as one, thereby increasing the diversity of cultural visits and tour routes. Secondly, famous historical blocks require restoration work because of old age and for maintaining cleanliness and order. As the number of tourist in Tainan City continues to grow, preserving and utilizing old houses has become an important topic.
(2) Hardware-centric construction makes cities bigger; however, only culture can make a city profound and great. Thus, I urge all heads of government to think as if you were the Director-General of the Cultural Affairs Bureau. This is also what Premier Lai encourages heads of government to do. Culture should be reinforced across all fields. In today’s report, we saw the effort that the Tainan City Government has put into cultural development. After all future cultural development projects have been realized, Tainan City will truly become the Cultural Capital of Taiwan.