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August 18, 2017

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Politics holds back Taiwan biomedical development: Wang

The China Post news staff-- Speaker Wang Jin-pyng yesterday spoke out against "politics" as standing in the way of the nation's biotech and medicine industry, making experts and scholars unwilling to join related state-sponsored development funds.

Wang made the remarks at the opening of a forum he was chairing, which was tasked with reviewing government policy on the development of Taiwan's biomedical industry.

Wang said the Legislative Yuan has passed a bill aimed at developing the biomedical industry in Taiwan, and the government has also announced "the Flying High National Diamond Project for the Biomedical Industry Development," but the project has yet to be fully realized.

He said the government originally promised to pick up 40 percent of the costs of establishing incubation centers and venture capital funds, but in the end, that percentage was cut to only 20 percent due to political factors. As a result, quite a few experts and scholars have turned down the invitation to participate in the establishment and operations of the incubation centers.

Wang also lamented that, while working out enforcement plans for the project, various government units were selfishly departmental in their attitude. This led to a lack of cooperation, which was vital to the project's success, he said.

In response, Premier Sean Chen said on the same occasion that the Cabinet will move to integrate the efforts of related units like the National Science Council, the Department of Health, the Council of Agriculture, the Ministry of Economic Affairs, and the Council for Economic Planning and Development, to effectively promote development in Taiwan's biomedical industry.

Academia Sinica President Dr. Wong Chi-huey, who was also present at the forum, noted that Taiwan's advantage in developing the biomedical industry won't surface without combining the efforts of the academic and industrial sectors.

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