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Taiwan consular official and envoy to Canada resign over Dulles passport

MOFA will have 200,000 passports redesigned

MOFA official Agnes Chen.

MOFA official Agnes Chen. (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Wednesday approved the resignation of Bureau of Consular Affairs Director-General Agnes Chen (陳華玉) and demoted Taiwan’s representative to Canada over the erroneous appearance of Washington Dulles International Airport in the new Taiwanese passports.

The mishap, which was expected to cost the state-owned printing company NT$80 million (US$2.6 million), was blamed on a designer who mistakenly used a picture of Dulles from the Internet to add details to an image of Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport.

An estimated 200,000 copies of the second-generation e-passport will have the relevant pages replaced, and 285 citizens who already received theirs will eventually be handed a new version, reports said.

Chen will remain at MOFA as an attaché. Her predecessor, Kung Chung-chen (龔中誠), who now serves as representative to Canada and who was responsible for the passport project, will also be demoted to a position in Taiwan after being informed by phone Wednesday, MOFA announced.