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Commercial Times: Views on Cabinet reshuffle

Commercial Times: Views on Cabinet reshuffle

Deputy Premier Eric Liluan Chu is set to leave the Cabinet to run for the mayorship of Xinbei City, which will force another Cabinet reshuffle. It will not be the first Cabinet change for the two-year-old administration of President Ma Ying-jeou, and the too-often changes of Cabinet members make them incapable of making any contributions in their posts.
Ministerial terms used to be four or five years. For example, Sun Yun-suan served as minister of economic affairs for 10 years from 1969, while K.T. Li was appointed finance minister that same year and served for seven years.
These technocrats helped the country weather the crisis of expulsion from the United Nations and the global oil crisis, and helped create the country's economic miracle.
In addition to their personal charisma and abilities, these economic architects contributed greatly to the country's economic development, partly because they were able to serve in their posts for quite a long time.
When Chen Tain-jy left his post as chief of the Council for Economic Planning and Development during the last Cabinet reshuffle in 2009, he expressed regret that the country could no longer produce an economic architect of the caliber of Li, who also served as a member of the council 1977-1988, because no minister of state has remained in the post long enough to give his or her abilities full play.
He said this is a problem that has impeded the country's long-term economic development.
This problem began in 2000, when Taiwan underwent its first transfer of power. During the Democratic Progressive Party's eight years of governance, the country saw six premiers, six economic ministers, six finance ministers and four chief economic planners, with an average term of a little over one year for each.
When President Ma Ying-jeou formed his administration, we urged him to choose his Cabinet members carefully and to allow them to work for long enough to learn the ropes.
Unfortunately, Ma's Cabinet is also far from stable, with its chief economic planner changing frequently. Whenever a new chief takes the reins, he or she comes up with various high-reaching plans that are doomed to fizzle out when another new chief weighs in. This is simply a waste of time.
If the new economic chief planner can only stay in the job for a short time, we can hardly expect Ma's administration to provide any vision for the country.
An unstable Cabinet will lead to an unstable economy. In order to attract talented individuals to work for the country, the president should refrain from changing the lineup of his Cabinet too often.
(May 10, 2010) (By Maubo Chang)




Updated : 2021-05-12 03:35 GMT+08:00