Lawmakers and scholars push for maritime affairs ministry

Several lawmakers and scholars have called on the Legislature to set up a government ministry dedicated to maritime affairs.

During a press conference Wednesday, Dr. Julia Huang of National Taiwan Ocean University said that academics have been pushing for a maritime affairs ministry for 20 years. She said Taiwan still has a long way to go when it comes to properly taking advantage of its maritime resources.

Huang said that monitoring maritime pollution is not part of the Environmental Protection Administration's work. At the same time, she said that the transportation ministry has not implemented many provisions of an international pact on stopping pollution from ships. Huang said a dedicated maritime affairs ministry will be much more efficient in solving both issues.

A Cabinet official says that the Legislature has passed a bill setting up a marine ministry in 2015. However, the Cabinet decided to take time to listen to different views about the ministry's structure and role. The official said the Cabinet hopes to send a new bill clarifying the ministry's structure to the Legislature during its next term.

Source: Radio Taiwan International