Taiwan legislature calls for China Airlines name change

Taiwan's Legislative Yuan passes resolution calling on MOTC to find fix for China Airlines' name

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(Facebook, Green Party image)

(Facebook, Green Party image)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan's legislature on Wednesday (July 22) passed a proposal to have the transportation ministry present a phased approach to changing the name of Taiwan's national carrier, China Airlines.

The Legislative Yuan on Wednesday passed a proposal by the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) caucus to have the Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) study and propose a phased plan to rename China Airlines, reported CNA. In the early stages, it should mainly focus on a redesign of the aircraft livery that does not involve negotiation on the modification of aviation rights, while also inviting relevant units to discuss various feasible approaches and supporting measures to change the English translation of China Airlines and rename the carrier.

The provisional meeting was held to address proposals by the DPP caucus and New Power Party (NPP) members. The DPP proposal pointed out that China Airlines is frequently mistaken for "Air China" by air travelers across the globe, which has hampered Taiwan's mask diplomacy efforts, as the national carrier often delivers the face coverings to countries in need.

The DPP proposal called on the Legislative Yuan to issue a resolution on the matter in order to strengthen Taiwan's international identity. The resolution called on the MOTC to actively study and put forward relevant policies for strengthening the international identification of China Airlines so as to end confusion with Chinese airlines in the short, medium, and long term.

The proposal stated that the MOTC should study and propose a phased and feasible renaming plan for China Airlines. In the early stage, it should mainly focus on a redesign of the aircraft's livery — which does not involve negotiations on the change of aviation rights — such as emphasizing the word "Taiwan" or an image of Taiwan in the design.

It also proposed the ministry invite relevant units to discuss various feasible schemes and supporting measures for changing the English translation of China Airlines and changing its official Chinese name.

After the proposal was put up for a vote, all 64 legislators present voted in favor. Thus the DPP's measure passed and will be handed over to the MOTC for implementation.

On Feb. 3, pro-Taiwan independence group Taiwan Republic Office (台灣國辦公室) called for the national airline's name to be changed to "Formosa Airlines" (福爾摩沙航空) or "Yushan Airlines" (玉山航空). Similarly, on Feb. 20, the Taiwanese American Senior Society - East Bay & Washington DC launched a petition on the U.S. website Change.org calling for the name of the national carrier to be changed to "Taiwan Airlines."