TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The National Communications Commission (NCC) said Thursday (July 18) it was opening an investigation into allegations that the Chinese government’s Taiwan Affairs Office (TAO) gave directions on a daily basis to Taiwanese media in the Want Want China Times Group.
Britain’s Financial Times reported Tuesday (July 16) that the China Times newspaper and CTiTV received calls from the TAO on how to deal with news from China and on what to put on the paper’s front page. Both the media group and the Chinese government body denied the allegations.
The NCC said Thursday it was inviting representatives from the Want Want China Times Group to a meeting during the afternoon to discuss the issue. The encounter was only a first step before the NCC decided whether or not to continue an administrative investigation, as no complaints had been brought against the media, the Central News Agency reported.
The topic of Chinese interference in Taiwanese politics through the media has popped up repeatedly over the past few months. Tens of thousands of people concerned about Beijing’s influence protested against the “red media” on June 23, and investigations showed that TV stations belonging to Want Want China Times have paid exaggerated attention to one presidential contender, Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) of the Kuomintang (KMT). Earlier this week, it was announced that the Kaohsiung mayor had won the primary to represent the main opposition party in the January 11, 2020 presidential election.