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Government will disband private arms firm, Tsai says

Government will disband private arms firm, Tsai says

Newly-appointed Defense Minister Tsai Ming-shian yesterday said that the government will disband a controversial private arms procurement company.
Tsai, however, would not give an exact date for the dissolution of the "Taiwan Goal." The opposition Kuomintang caucus has urged the Cabinet to call off the arms procurement project no later than Friday, and considering convening an ad hoc committee to investigate if the private company has already signed contracts with foreign arms companies.
"Premier Chang Chun-hsiung (張俊雄) publicly committed to dissolving or disbanding the 'Taiwan Goal' as early as possible. The disbandment, however, still needs to undergo certain procedures and needs more time," said Tsai yesterday when invited by the KMT caucus to the Legislative Yuan.
Tsai also took the opportunity to rebuke comments by the KMT camp claiming that the Cabinet secretly plans to establish another private firm to take "Taiwan Goal's" place to serve as a platform for buying and selling arms.
Labeling the accusation as "unlikely," Tsai reiterated that the company will be disbanded as Chang had promised.
The MND was to be the largest shareholder of the private company that was established last month under the drafting of Vice Premier Chiou I-jen (邱義仁), with the goal of facilitating the development of the arms industry in Taiwan.
The opposition camp and local media, nevertheless, had criticized its establishment as an attempt to consolidate support within the DPP, especially because the company is headed by Wu Nai-jen (吳乃仁), a DPP heavyweight with no military background.
The scandal forced former Defense Minister Lee Tien-yu (李天羽) to resign last Saturday, saying that he deeply regretted the failure to implement this plan and was sorry for the concern and doubts it sparked.
Lee, who took the position last June, was the fourth defense minister to serve during President Chen Shui-bian's (陳水扁) eight-year tenure since the year 2000.


Updated : 2021-05-14 04:54 GMT+08:00