Legislative Yuan agrees to hold extraordinary session

According to the consensus, budget proposals for 2019 will be submitted to the Finance Committee before 6 p.m. Thursday, to be reviewed by all parties and government agencies from Jan. 4 to noon Jan. 7. (NOWnews)

TAIPEI (CNA) — In a special meeting following the end of the current session, the Legislative Yuan reached a cross-party consensus to hold an extraordinary session from Jan. 2-11 to review the central government’s 2019 budget.

The decision was on Jan. 2 made following a 90-minute cross-party negotiation called by legislative speaker Su Jia-chyuan (蘇嘉全) after Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) caucus whip Ker Chien-ming (柯建銘) proposed the meeting.

DPP caucus convener Lee Chun-yi (李俊俋) said lawmakers will only review and vote on the budget during the extraordinary session.

New Power Party Legislator Hsu Yung-ming (徐永明) had argued that other important amendments relating to transport safety, immigration and national security should also be dealt with during the extraordinary session.

However, People First Party Legislator Chou Chen Hsiu-hsia (周陳秀霞) said the session should focus exclusively on the central government budget as economic issues are of most importance to the public.

According to the consensus, budget proposals for 2019 will be submitted to the Finance Committee before 6 p.m. on Thursday, to be reviewed by all parties and government agencies from Jan. 4 to noon Jan. 7.

Cross-party negotiations on the budget are scheduled to kick off on the afternoon of Jan. 7, before a formal session to review budget proposals that will be held from Jan. 9-11.

By Wang Yang-yu and Flor Wang