Opposition gives President Tsai failing grade on her 3rd anniversary

At a press conference held on the third anniversary of Tsai’s inauguration, KMT legislators looked at the DPP government’s achievements in domestic affairs and the rule of law, the economy and environment, foreign affairs and cross-strait relations, society and public sentiment. (NOWnews)

TAIPEI (CNA) — The opposition Kuomintang (KMT) on May 20 gave President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) a failing grade on all aspects of her performance over the past three years, while the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) rejected the KMT’s claims.

At a press conference held on the third anniversary of Tsai’s inauguration, the KMT looked at the DPP government’s achievements in domestic affairs and the rule of law, the economy and environment, foreign affairs and cross-strait relations, society and public sentiment.

KMT Chairman Wu Den-yih (吳敦義) said that average annual economic growth under the KMT government from 2008-2015 was 2.83 percent, against the DPP’s 2.40 percent over the past three years. Over the same period, Taiwan’s global competitiveness ranking also fell from 11.5th position to 17th.

In addition, the KMT signed three Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) including the Cross-Straits Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) during the same period while the DPP only signed FTAs with Paraguay and Eswatini, Wu said.

On tourism, international arrivals in Taiwan grew at an annual rate of 14.06 percent against 1.97 percent after the DPP took power; Total tourism receipts reached NT$820 billion in 2015 and dropped to NT$780 billion in 2017, based on statistics produced by the KMT.

The KMT said, as to companies disbanded or closed down, the rate was -6.4 percent under the last KMT government and 10.82 percent since Tsai took power. On the diplomatic side, the KMT lost one diplomatic ally in eight years while the DPP has lost five in three years.

Wu said he hopes the Tsai administration will do better by reducing business failures and improving cross-strait relations, but also blasted the DPP for political persecution, using the state apparatus for political goals and pushing for selective reforms aimed at military personnel, civil servants and teachers.

DPP spokesperson Lee Ming-li (李明俐) issued a press release describing the opposition as “the source of chaos” impeding reform and development in Taiwan.

Lee scolded the KMT for kowtowing to Beijing during its eight years in power and sacrificing sovereignty for “fake international participation.” KMT foreign policy pushed Taiwan towards Beijing’s “one country, two systems” model and “entrapped Taiwan’s economy in China’s hands,” Lee added, stressing that Taiwan is now on the right path and making progress.

Meanwhile, Legislative Speaker Su Jia-chyuan (蘇嘉全) described Taiwan-U.S. relations as at their best for more than three years when he received Indiana Democratic Party Chairman John Zody on Monday in Taipei.

By Yu Hsian, Yeh Su-ping, Fan Cheng-hsiang, and Emerson Lim