Terry Gou bets on medical park promise to boost election bid

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Taiwan businessman and presidential hopeful Terry Gou said on May 11 that he will establish the island’s largest medical facility once he is elected president. (NOWnews)

TAIPEI (CNA) — Taiwan businessman and presidential hopeful Terry Gou (郭台銘) said on May 11 that he will establish the island’s largest medical facility once he is elected president.

Gou, the chairman of Taiwan manufacturing giant Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., better known as Foxconn, told a news conference that he hopes to integrate Taiwan’s medical resources and set up new medical technology platforms.

The tycoon said he will donate 90 percent of his assets and most of which will be put into health care development in Taiwan.

The presidential contender said while he is the wealthiest man in Taiwan, he was also the family member of cancer patients, which made him realize that money cannot buy health; he; therefore; wants to develop Taiwan’s medical care system.

Gou’s first wife Serena Lin (林淑如) died from breast cancer in 2005, and his younger brother Tony Gou (郭台成) died from leukemia in 2007.

The tycoon said some people from the medical community have suggested that Taiwan establish a cancer center.

Given Taiwan has some of the best doctors and most advanced medical technology in Chinese-speaking communities, it could become a regional center for cancer treatment and prevention, Gou said.

Gou, who declared his intention in mid-April to compete for the opposition Kuomintang’s nomination in the 2020 presidential election, said he will set up the medical park for cancer care in Taichung, Taipei, and Kaohsiung once he is elected.

By doing so, he said, not only will the doctors be able to make a great fortune, the facility can also offer services that Taiwan’s health insurance currently does not cover.

In addition, Gou said, it will attract patients with foreign nationality to seek treatment in Taiwan, and in turn keep Taiwan’s doctors from seeking opportunities overseas.

The spotlight has been shining on Gou since he announced his intention to run for president.

However, apart from Gou, the other aspirants are former Legislative Yuan speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平), former New Taipei Mayor Eric Chu (朱立倫) and former Taipei County Magistrate Chou Hsi-wei (周錫瑋), while some KMT supporters have been calling for the popular Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) to also vie for the party’s nomination.

During a visit to the United States earlier in May, the billionaire said he planned to resign as chairman of Hon Hai, which is also known as Foxconn.

As the market watches closely who will succeed him to become Hon Hai’s chairman to run the world’s largest contract manufacturer of electronic products, including Apple iPhones, Gou was nominated as a board member of the company, the firm revealed in a filing to the Taiwan Stock Exchange on Friday.

When asked to comment on the news, Gou said on Saturday he will not seek to be re-elected as chairman, even if he is not picked by the KMT as the candidate for the 2020 presidential election.

By Han Ting-ting and Chung Yu-chen