Jul 07, 2017 Politics Comments Off on NDC completes 1st stage of budget for infrastructure plan
Taipei--The National Development Council (NDC), the country's top economic planning agency, said Friday that it has completed a budget of NT$83.9 billion (US$2.74 billion) for the first stage of spending under the newly passed "forward-looking infrastructure development plan."
The NT$83.9 billion budget will be allocated during the period of July 2017 through December 2018 for a total of 68 projects in a wide range of industries under the plan, said Kung Ming-hsin (???), NDC deputy chief.
The move for the NDC to write the budget came after a bill for the infrastructure development plan cleared the floor of the Legislative Yuan on Wednesday.
The newly passed bill will allow the Cabinet to spend up to NT$420 billion over the next four years on the country's infrastructure works, as well as high-tech development, in a bid to speed up the pace of economic growth.
The infrastructure development plan has been embraced by President Tsai Ing-wen's (???) administration as its anchor economic stimulus project, including investment in a wide range of industries such as rail transportation, water environment, urban and rural development, digital development and green energy.
In addition, the newly passed investment plan will also be aimed at improving food safety, building a friendly environment for child-raising at a time when the birthrate is on the decline, and creating jobs.
After the four-year period, the Cabinet will be eligible to seek an extension of another four years to continue its investment, which will not be allowed to top the amount spent in the first four years.
Kung said the investment is expected to boost Taiwan's economic growth by about 1 percentage point in 2019.
Apart from the high-tech development part of the infrastructure plan, the NDC's budget will cover almost all of the plan, and Kung said that an inter-ministerial technology development committee will write another budget for digital development. Under the NDC's budget for the first stage, NT$17.09 billion will be used for rail transportation projects, NT$20.77 billion will be spent to improve the water environment, NT$6.13 billion will be used for green energy projects and NT$36.3 billion will go toward urban and rural development.
In addition, the council plans to spend NT$2.39 billion to improve vocational education, NT$27 million on food safety and an additional NT$1.17 billion to build a better environment for children, the NDC said.
The NDC will submit the budget to the Cabinet next week for approval before the spending is approved by the Legislative Yuan, Kung said.
After the first stage of the budget, Kung said, the NDC will write the second stage of the budget for the rest of the four-year timeline.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel
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