President Tsai Ing-wen test rides airport MRT


TAIPEI, Taiwan — President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) on Tuesday took a ride on the new mass rapid transit (MRT) line between Taipei and Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport, expressing her belief that the MRT line represents a new milestone in the development of public transportation in Taiwan.

“We hope for a new outlook for the new year as transportation in Taiwan marks a new milestone with the opening of the airport MRT,” Tsai said in a speech on arriving at the MRT Taiwan High Speed Rail Taoyuan Station.

Accompanied by Transportation Minister Ho Chen Tan (賀陳旦) and Taoyuan Mayor Cheng Wen-tsan (鄭文燦), the president took the airport MRT line from Taipei Main Station (A1) to Airport Terminal 2 (A13), before heading to Taiwan High Speed Rail Taoyuan Station (A18).

Tsai said the public has waited for the new MRT line for two decades. “We must make the wait worthwhile,” she said.

When asked by the press if she was satisfied with the new MRT line, Tsai smiled and gave a thumbs-up to the camera.

The airport MRT line is scheduled to begin trial runs on Feb. 2 before commercial operations officially start on March 2.

Passengers will ride free of charge for the one-month trial period, with 50 percent discounts available for the first month of commercial operations.

The airport MRT line will operate daily from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Later, Tsai visited Ren Hai Temple in Taoyuan’s Zhongli District to pray for a good harvest, happiness and wellbeing over the new year.

She also handed out red envelopes to the crowds of people who lined up to receive this symbol of good luck from the president.