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Taiwan's Ministry of Finance says Japanese drag queen increases receipt lottery luck

Ministry seizes on trend to promote use of cloud receipts

A portrait of Akihiro Miwa decked out in golden yellow. (Facebook, Akihiro Miwa Community photo)

A portrait of Akihiro Miwa decked out in golden yellow. (Facebook, Akihiro Miwa Community photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Ministry of Finance (MOF) has said saving an image of famed Japanese drag queen Akihiro Miwa (美輪明宏) as a cell phone background is one of two ways consumers can increase their chances of winning the receipt lottery in 2022.

The Japanese urban legend that saving images of the entertainer as a phone backdrop will increase one's wealth has become popular among Taiwanese netizens of late. The MOF is now jumping on the trend to promote its cloud-based receipts, according to a CNA report.

“Please deeply believe in the magic of Akihiro Miwa — it will bring you good luck," a post on the MOF's Facebook page read. For even better luck, the government ministry recommended choosing a yellow image of the star, since the color is associated with wealth and Akihiro often sported straw-blonde hair.

At the same time, the ministry recommended consumers ask for cloud receipts while checking out and reminded them that there are extra prizes on offer. Those who use cloud receipts get access to additional prizes beyond the regular lottery, including 30 giveaways valued at NT$1 million (US$36,166); 16,000 worth NT$2,000; 10,000 valued at NT$800; and 1 million with a value of NT$500.

The ministry said the receipt lottery winners for November and December will be announced on Jan. 25.

Recent discussions on Instagram and Facebook show Taiwanese are increasingly drawn to the supposed fortuitous effects of changing cell phone backgrounds. Some claim they miraculously found cash on the street right after switching to a golden background, per CNA.