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
‘LOCAL TRANSMISSION’: The nation reported 11 new cases, including seven local infections in the north, the highest daily number of cases since the pandemic began The COVD-19 situation has entered the “local transmission” stage and enhanced disease prevention measures have been implemented until June 8, the Central Epidemic Command Center announced yesterday as it reported six locally transmitted cases with unclear infection sources. The center reported 11 new cases yesterday: four imported cases from India, and seven local infections in northern Taiwan, the highest daily number of cases since the COVID-19 pandemic began. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said that one of the local infections — case No. 1,201 — is a woman who is a family member living with
SIXTEEN LOCAL: Three COVID-19 infections are linked to a cluster at a gambling house in Yilan County, 10 to a case in New Taipei City and three had unclear sources The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday urged people to increase vigilance and thoroughly practice preventive measures against COVID-19 as it reported 16 locally transmitted cases of the disease. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said that 21 cases were confirmed in Taiwan yesterday: 16 local cases, four imported cases and one case undetermined. The locally transmitted cases are three linked to a cluster of infections at a gambling house in Yilan County, 10 associated with a previous case in New Taipei City and three with unclear sources of infection. The CECC on Tuesday reported a cluster
TRACING TROUBLE: An infected man who had said that all his children were abroad was found to have a daughter in Kaohsiung who tested positive, the center said The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday reported a new daily record of 29 local COVID-19 cases, including seven cases with unknown sources of infection. Of the 29 cases, 16 are linked to tea houses in Taipei’s Wanhua District (萬華), Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, told a news briefing in Taipei. The 16 are tea house workers or visitors, or their contacts, the CECC said. Workers and visitors to the establishments have frequent interpersonal contact, but few protective measures against the COVID-19 pandemic are in place, Chen said, urging those who have been exposed or have
GRID PROBLEM: A Taipower spokesman said that the blackouts were not due to usage exceeding supply, nor were they because of a problem at the Singda plant There were rolling blackouts across Taiwan yesterday due to a grid malfunction at the Singda Power Plant (興達電廠) in Kaohsiung’s Yongan District (永安), while Taiwan Power Co (Taipower, 台電) said that it was working “as hard as possible to resolve the issue as soon as possible.” At 2:37pm, a malfunction at an ultra-high-voltage substation in Kaohsiung’s Lujhu District (路竹) triggered four generators at the Singda plant to go offline, cutting power output by 2.2 million kilowatts and prompting Taipower to initiate rolling blackouts nationwide as it worked on the problem. Taipower spokesman Chang Ting-shu (張廷抒) told a news conference in Taipei that