President Tsai promises to increase budget for sports development

2017/08/31 22:40:42 fontsize-small fontsize-default fontsize-big
Photo courtesy of the Presidential Office

Photo courtesy of the Presidential Office

Taipei, Aug. 31 (CNA) President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) promised Thursday to increase government spending on the sport in Taiwan and said she expected funding to double over the next four years.

Speaking at a meeting with athletes, trainers and officials from the Taiwan team to the just concluded Taipei Universiade at the Presidential Office, Tsai said that during her electoral campaign, she promised to double the government budget for sports development within eight years. She now expects that goal to be achieved in the next four years.

In addition to the annual government budget and the Sports Development Fund managed by the Sports Administration under the Ministry of Education, the special budget for the forward-looking infrastructure development plan will also allocate NT$10 billion (US$331.5 million) to sports related programs over the next four years, the president said.

From the second half of this year to the end of next year, the special budget for forward-looking infrastructure will allocate NT$3.6 billion for sports development nationwide, which will be used to construct facilities, education and training, while also offering awards and subsidies for athletes, she added.

The Legislature approved early Thursday a special budget of about NT$107 billion for the first stage of the forward-looking infrastructure plan which will run from September 2017 to December 2018.

The Sports Development Fund will also allocate an additional NT$580 million for the same purpose next year, Tsai noted, adding that the budget for sports development will increase each year.

Taiwanese athletes clinched 26 gold, 34 silver and 30 bronze medals at the just concluded Taipei Universiade, which put the country in third place on the medal table and represents its best ever performance at the global university sports games. It has also provided a major boost to public enthusiasm for sports.

(By Sophia Yeh and Romulo Huang)

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