TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Each household could soon find four vouchers, each worth NT$200 (US$6.63), in its mailbox as part of a government campaign to counter the effects of the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic on the economy.
Contrary to earlier reports, the vouchers can be used anywhere in Taiwan, though each of them targets a different category, the Cabinet announced Thursday (March 12). One voucher should be used at restaurants, another at shopping districts, the third one should be used to pay for cultural or artistic activities, while the fourth has to be spent at night markets, other markets, or factories open to tourists, CNA reported.
At the news conference following the regular weekly Cabinet meeting, Minister without Portfolio Kung Ming-hsin (龔明鑫) said that while the NT$200 vouchers would be valid anywhere in the country, they would still be subject to a time limit.
The total budget for the voucher campaign amounted to NT$2.3 billion, officials said, while other measures also including vouchers were still under consideration. Kung rejected concerns that the NT$60 billion special package the government recently approved to fight the impact of the coronavirus would not be enough. The earlier relief measures were taken, the more problems they could prevent, thus saving money in the long term, he said.
The minister also pointed out that Taiwan has been relatively successful in controlling the virus outbreak, though its economy might still suffer the indirect consequences of whatever happens in the United States and Europe, CNA reported.
On Wednesday (March 11), Taiwan’s total cases of coronavirus reached 48, according to an announcement by the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC).