1. Keynote speech ‘Modern Thoughts for Historical Tainan’ [delivered] by Distinguished Professor Fu Chao-ching, Department of Architecture, National Cheng Kung University
(1) I’d like to say thank you to Professor Fu for his wonderful speech. He has taken us to re-think with what modern thoughts and attitudes we should equip Tainan with as a historical city. Apart from finding a balance between pure preservation of historic sites as if freezing them and reuse of them, we can seek dynamic management for cultural heritage in the course of the past and present development, in order to enrich and enliven cultural heritage preservation in Tainan.
(2) In his presentation, Professor Fu showed us different ways to classify the diversity of urban spaces and introduced various ways of thinking to deal with the spaces on different levels. From the history timeline to urban space, we should treat a city as an organic body by ways of linkage, integration, bonding, and extension. In this respect, heritage preservation in Tainan should start with a point and gradually evolve toward integral preservation and revitalization of an area, a region, and then the whole city. When maintaining the continuance of a city’s historical context, the uniqueness of a city will be highlighted by a space where antiquity and modernity are creatively combined.
(3) Fort Zeelandia, now Anping Fort, will celebrate its fourth centenaryin 2024. The vision of building the Tainan Cultural & Creative Boulevard will also take form in this indicative year. Over the past few years, the city government has adopted Professor Fu’s suggestions in a number of projects, including the demolition of the China Town Building, Tainan Axis Landscape Transformation, and façade restoration of old buildings in historic streets. In addition, the city government has been turning the city into a historical, cultural and creative area by linking peripheral historical monuments, historical buildings, and old houses, alleys and lanes along the axis featuring the NCKU Archway, Tainan Railway Station, the Tang De-Jhang Memorial Park, Jhongjheng Road, the docking waterways of Tainan Canal, and the Anping Fort through gradual expansion. By doing so, we hope to infuse the city with new life and create substantial tourism and economic benefits. The organization of the 2017 Taiwan Design Expo is an intermediate outcome of this concept.
(4) Cross-department collaboration of the city government is the key to success of the novel idea of Tainan as the city of history. Premier Lai has once said, “Every bureau or department head should assume himself or herself as the director-general of Cultural Affairs Bureau.” This idea coincides with what former French Culture Minister Jack Lang said, “ Il y a quarante-quatre ministères de la culture en France (There are 44 Ministries of Culture in France.) .” That is to say, cultural elements must be considered in every part of city management, and each bureau or department should equip itself with a cultural vision and cultural sensitivity. When promoting cultural policies, cross-department involvement and support are key to success. Therefore, I hope all heads of bureaus and departments can keep this attitude and spirit in mind in order to make the ideal of Tainan as the city of history and goal a reality. After the Cultural Affairs Bureau has sorted Professor Fu’s suggestions, the city’s bureaus and departments should study their feasibility.
2. ‘Having food beats everything else”: Creating an environment for a happy life
(1) In order to further industrial and economic development in Tainan and create opportunities for investment, employment, and industrial development, after former Deputy Secretary-general Liu Shih-chung became vice president of the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA), Director-General Fang Jin-cheng of the Bureau of Economic Development was promoted to Deputy Secretary-general, and Deputy Director-general Yin Shih-hsi was promoted to Director-general. I believe that with their expertise and rich experience, they will continuously enhance Tainan’s economic development energy.
(2) The Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) has recently announced the 3nm fab investment project in Tainan. I thank TSMC for choosing Tainan as the location of such a huge investment project. Tainan is currently the production base of TSMC’s 20nm and 16nm processes. After the 5nm and 3nm fabs start operations, they will accelerate the formation and development of the semiconductor industry cluster in Tainan to demonstrate the strengths of a complete cluster and supply chain. The city government will team up with the central government to assist TSMC in resolving local infrastructure problems including land, water supply and electricity supply to promote local industrial development and thereby revitalize Taiwan’s economic development.
(3) After the county-city merger, ‘Having food beats everything else” has always been the core value in city management of the city government. Over the past seven years, the city government has attracted 1,318 investment projects totaling NT$895.1 billion and has created over 82,000 job opportunities, reducing unemployment rate from 5.15% at the beginning of merger to 3.8% at present. In the future, we will continue to attract investment to Tainan, and I hope the Bureau of Economic Development and the Industrial Development and Investment Promotion Association of Tainan City proactively assist private enterprises in investment in Tainan and provide them with the necessary administrative assistance and services to solve related problems, expanding the job market for all citizens to enjoy a secure life and a happy job through public-private collaboration.
3. Improvement of pre-school education and care with the ‘Three Arrows for Safe Kindergartens’
(1) In academic year 2017-2018, we will establish kindergartens in 14 elementary and junior high schools to create an all-new milestone of the pupil and class ratio of 4:6 between public and private kindergartens. In 2017, we raised the amount of pre-school education from NT$10,000 a year to NT$30,000 a year. We have also promoted the private kindergartens’ transition to public kindergartens with government subsidies to reduce the tuition and fees of private kindergarten. We hope that the ‘Three Arrows for Safe Kindergartens’ policy can reduce the financial burden of young couples, enhance competitiveness, and build a livable city.
(2) I thank the Bureau of Education and all kindergartens for their efforts to improve the quality of kindergarten service and demonstrate the characteristics of kindergartens. Since 2011, Tainan City has won 11 awards, including five gold and six silver awards in the Kindergarten Category of the Ministry of Education Awards for Teaching Excellence, where we top all counties and cities of Taiwan on the number of gold awards and total number of awards. Tainan is also the only county/city with kindergarten teachers winning the Excellent Teacher Award from the Ministry of Education for three consecutive years. Such are the achievements of Tainan in pre-school education and care.
(3) Children are the hope of a country’s future. I urge the Bureau of Education to continuously supervise all newly established affiliated kindergartens to make incessant improvements and provide the best pre-school education environment. Through concerted efforts of all stakeholders, I believe that apart from reducing the impact of low fertility and slowing population drop, we may allow our children to enjoy happy learning and healthy growth in an environment that enables adaptive development filled with love and care.