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Taiwan government to lower price of masks

Face masks to be sold at NT$6 a piece, starting Feb. 1

Taiwan to lower fixed price of surgical masks. 

Taiwan to lower fixed price of surgical masks.  (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) announced Thursday (Jan. 30) that all face masks in Taiwan will be sold at NT$6 (20 cents) a piece, starting Saturday (Feb. 1), to assist citizens in preventing the Wuhan coronavirus.

In light of the viral outbreak, the MOEA and the Ministry of Health and Welfare (MOHW) have released millions of face masks through Taiwan's convenience store chains, but have also attracted complaints about the high price of each mask. On Thursday, the MOEA said that it would lower the fixed price of the masks to NT$6 until the epidemic passes, reported CNA.

As the number of Wuhan coronavirus cases continue to accelerate, the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control (CDC) announced that six million face masks would be distributed across the country over a three-day period, with each individual allowed to purchase three masks. However, many convenience stores have reported that there is still not enough supply to meet the surging demand.

Following President Tsai Ing-wen's (蔡英文) promise to produce 4.2 million surgical masks per day on Thursday, the MOHW said that approximately 1.4 million of the masks will be given to hospitals and medical workers while the rest will be distributed to convenience stores as well as local drug stores, reported Liberty Times.