Kuomintang candidate makes pledges on new Taiwanese citizenship policy
By Stephanie Chao
07 September 2015

TAIPEI, Taiwan (The China Post/ANN) - Kuomintang presidential candidate Hung Hsiu-chu reaffirms a pledge to reduce time restrictions on mainland Chinese spouses applying for Taiwan identity cards

Taiwan's Kuomintang (KMT) presidential candidate Hung Hsiu-chu announced her new Taiwanese citizen policy position yesterday, and reaffirmed a pledge to reduce time restrictions on mainland Chinese spouses applying for Republic of China (R.O.C.) identity cards to only four years.

Hung made her pledge during the announcement of her living standard policy pledges at a citizenship ceremony for “new Taiwanese,” referring to foreign spouses of Taiwanese nationals. The event was also attended by her supporters, making her attendance at the ceremony her first public appearance since her three-day campaign “pause.”

“If I become president, I will definitely be the president who cares for new Taiwanese citizens the most,” Hung promised.

Her four policies announced on Sunday included expanding the current budget and services for new Taiwanese household centers, direct occupational matchmaking after vocational training, assisting employers in recognising foreign education certifications and reducing doubts and expanding citizens’ occupation opportunities.

On the fourth point, Hung proposed plans to see immigrants and new Taiwanese citizens as potential talents in providing assistance for the Taiwanese business community in the Southeast Asian market.

Her plans to reduce the time restrictions on receiving R.O.C. identity certification for mainland Chinese spouses from six to only four years was previously alluded to in an event on Kinmen in June. Hung expressed her hope that “decreasing political interpretation of marriages,” would improve cross-strait trust and relations.

Current laws state mainland Chinese spouses must reside in Taiwan for at least four years, meaning a spouse must legally stay in Taiwan for over 183 days each year, in order to apply for long-term residence.

Long-term residence qualifications include legally staying in Taiwan for two successive years, and for over 183 days per year, in order to then apply for permanent settlement.

‘What Tsai proposed are policies we are already doing’

“What she proposed,” Hung stated, referring to Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) presidential hopeful Tsai Ing-wen’s policies for “new Taiwanese” proposed in the last few days, “are policies that we are actually already carrying out.” Tsai’s policies include recognising overseas educational qualifications.

On the government’s part, counselling programs for foreign spouses are already in effect, ranging from occupational training for mainland Chinese or foreign spouses, language training and assistance in obtaining Taiwan’s drivers license.

Recognising overseas education certifications is something the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Education Ministry are currently working to achieve, Hung stated.

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