Taiwan's National Day banquet to be scaled down due to coronavirus

This year's banquet will be modest without presence of overseas politicians, guests

President Tsai (center) attends National Day banquet in 2019.

President Tsai (center) attends National Day banquet in 2019. (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The upcoming National Day banquet will be scaled down in view of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the authorities confirmed Tuesday (Sept. 22)

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said via a statement that “foreign politicians, prominent figures, and international friends are unable to visit Taiwan for National Day events,” noting that the coronavirus is raging in many parts of the world and has forced countries to maintain travel restrictions.

The banquet will be held on Oct. 10 but in a scaled-down way — mainly due to the absence of foreign guests. Nevertheless, foreign envoys and guests who are based in Taiwan will still join the president and other top government officials, said MOFA.

The ministry will closely follow the disease prevention measures laid out by the country’s epidemic command center. These include asking participants to leave their personal information and having staffers wear masks at all times.