Stamps, postmarks from Dongsha Island gain popularity

Taipei--Commemorative stamps and postmarks from a post office in the Taiwan-held Dongsha Island in the South China Sea are in high demand among philatelists in Taiwan, particularly as such products are not easily available.

Dongsha, also known as Pratas Island, is a patrol outpost that has one post office, which serves the 200 coast guard officers deployed there.

The services are limited to the receipt and delivery of mail and the sale of products such as stamps and souvenirs, including dolls.

The post office is staffed by two volunteer workers, who handle about 70 pieces of mail per month, according to the Coast Guard Administration's (CGA) Dongsha Command.

Part of the volunteers' work involves supplying stamps and postmarks to collectors on Taiwan proper who request such services, according to the command.

The post office, which is decorated with installation art that portrays fishing activities, dates back to 1966 when a mail service was set up on the island by Taiwan's Marine Corps.

Source: Overseas Community Affairs Council