E-commerce site Taobao Taiwan (淘寶台灣) yesterday announced that it would leave the Taiwanese market at the end of this year, after being told by the Investment Commission to register as a Chinese entity.
It made the “tough decision” to leave Taiwan, effective Jan. 1 next year, due to “market uncertainties” and was in talks with its employees over a redundancy scheme, the company said in a statement.
It would also help sellers on its site complete their outstanding deals to protect their rights and those of the buyers, it said.
The company said that it had decided to stop taking new orders before noon yesterday ahead of going offline on Dec. 31, and had also closed down some other functions on its Web site, which was launched in September last year.
The Investment Commission on Aug. 24 declared the site’s operator — UK-registered Claddagh Venture Investment Ltd — to be a Chinese investment and ordered Claddagh to rectify the issue within six months or withdraw its investment.
It also fined Claddagh NT$410,000 for contravening the law on Chinese investments.
A company is deemed to have Chinese investment if more than 30 percent of its shares are held by a Chinese entity or if it is in effect controlled by a Chinese entity, and the commission found that China’s Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (阿里巴巴), which operates the Taobao e-commerce site in China, held a 28.77 percent stake in Claddagh.
Although that amount is under the legal limit, the commission decided that the company was effectively controlled by Alibaba, based on a number of factors, including that Claddagh could not hold shareholder or board meetings without the consent of Alibaba, due to the size of the stake held by the Chinese firm, and that Claddagh relied heavily on Alibaba to run Taobao Taiwan.
Vice Minister of Economic Affairs Lin Chuan-neng (林全能) said that Taobao Taiwan had broken the law concerning Chinese investment and the commission’s decision to fine Claddagh followed regulations.
Executive Yuan spokesman Ting Yi-ming (丁怡銘) said that the government would not allow Chinese companies that want to enter the Taiwanese market to use indirect methods to bypass the law and it has stepped up its investigations into suspect operations.
Additional reporting by AFP
‘FREEDOM WINE’: Taiwanese are empathetic of Australians, the president said, while lawmakers called on their constituents to drink Australian wine to show their support Taiwan would take action to back Australians at a time when they are “under tremendous pressure,” President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) said yesterday, as tensions between Australia and China heated up. Taipei and Canberra have been mutually supportive in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, especially in exchanging critical medical materials in the early stages, Tsai said, before chairing the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Central Standing Committee meeting in Taipei. Taiwan and Australia are like-minded nations, sharing the common values of democracy, freedom and human rights, while their economic and trade relations have also become close, she said. Canberra has been voicing support for Taiwan’s international
VIGILANCE: From tomorrow all arrivals must provide the result of a PCR test issued within three days of boarding, and the CECC asked people to report anyone who has faked their result The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) expects an increase in the number of returning travelers in the coming days, Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) said yesterday, adding that the varying qualities of COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test reports from other countries is a big concern. Chen, who heads the center, was speaking to the media on the sidelines of a Taiwan Foundation for Rare Disorders scholarship award ceremony in Taipei. “As the global COVID-19 situation is worsening, and with some holidays coming up, there might be an increase in the number of overseas Taiwanese returning to Taiwan,” he
SKIN, ENTRAILS: Placards also dotted the legislative chamber, with slogans such as ‘Oppose ractopamine pork — not US pork’ and ‘Much ado about nothing’ Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) lawmakers yesterday pelted Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) with pig skin and entrails as he addressed the Legislative Yuan on pork imports for the first time since the KMT’s boycott began on Sept. 18. Opposition lawmakers have been demanding an apology from the government for its decision to lift its ban on the importation of US pork containing residues of the livestock drug ractopamine. After Su arrived at 10am for his 13th attempt to deliver a regular policy report, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) caucus moved to change the agenda to accommodate the premier. The motion resulted in cries of
CECC RULES: The autumn-winter COVID-19 prevention program, including mandatory mask wearing in eight types of public venues and indoor facilities, begins today A temporary, two-week ban on Indonesian migrant workers entering the nation is to begin on Friday, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) announced yesterday as it reported 24 new imported cases of COVID-19. Twenty of the new cases are Indonesian migrant workers who arrived between Nov. 11 and Friday last week, said Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center. The cases were discovered during a special project on Friday to conduct polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests on all 939 recently arrived Indonesian migrant workers in centralized quarantine facilities, as the majority of imported cases in the past