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Former culture minister to head Taiwan's state-owned news agency

Lee Yung-te steps down from presidential office role to helm Central News Agency

Former Minister of Culture Lee Yung-te has been appointed the new head of CNA. (Taiwan News, CNA images)

Former Minister of Culture Lee Yung-te has been appointed the new head of CNA. (Taiwan News, CNA images)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Former Minister of Culture Lee Yung-te (李永得) is to step down from his role at the presidential office to become the new head of Taiwan’s state-owned Central News Agency (CNA).

The presidential office made the announcement on Wednesday (June 21), saying that it had accepted Lee’s resignation. A spokesperson thanked him for his contribution to cultural and social innovation policies, as well as his contributions to Hakka cultural development.

The current Minister of Culture Shih Che (史哲) said in a press release that he is confident Lee will lead CNA to realize the national news agency’s full potential as it prepares for its 100th anniversary next year. CNA's directors serve for a term of three years that can be renewed once only.

Shih also said that 15 candidates were selected to serve on CNA’s board of directors, and were chosen based on experience, gender and ethnicity, for a multitude of perspectives. He said the candidates have experience in communications, culture, international relations, and law, and include former Taiwan ambassadors, professors at national universities, leaders of NGOs, lawyers, and an accountant.

Taiwan law requires that CNA appoint nine to 15 directors to its board who either have mass media backgrounds (either as scholars or in the industry) and are seen as impartial by society. Except for the board's chair, directors are not paid a salary.

CNA was founded in Guangzhou in 1924, and relocated to Taiwan in 1949. According to the agency’s website, it has produced nearly 10 million news reports and 2 million photographs.

The agency is funded by the government, through donations, and by providing news items as a service to other news outlets, like Taiwan News.