TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- Taiwan's Central Bank yesterday announced that it has increased its 2019 budget to issue more NT$10 (US$0.32) coins to cope with the massive claw machine craze that has gripped the country in recent years, reported CNA.
During a meeting held by the Finance Committee of the Legislative Yuan, Central Bank Governor Yang Chin-long (楊金龍) announced that the budget for the issuing of coins was to be raised to NT$1.7 billion, 60 percent of which will be NT$10 coins.
When questioned by Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Chiang Yung-chang (江永昌) why the budget had been raised so dramatically in one year, Yang said from his understanding, arcade claw machines are very popular now, and the explosion in the use of NT$10 coins is because that is the base price to play.
Chiang then asked Yang if he had ever played the machines, and he responded by saying, "I have seen them, but I have not played them." However, Yang emphasized that the circulation of the coins should to be increased to meet the needs of the society.
Chiang added that the government should not underestimate the social phenomenon that the claw machine fad has become. He said there are now 3,353 claw machine companies in Taiwan and more than 10,000 claw crane arcades have popped up, which is more than all the 7-Eleven and other convenience store chains combined in the country.