We admit it, there were some big stories we missed writing about over the past year, but it’s not easy working a full-time job and having only one person who is your writer and editor. This year saw the inauguration of Taiwan’s first female president. It also saw China force other countries to extradite Taiwanese citizens who were accused of committing fraud that allegedly targeted Chinese citizens. And US President-elect Donald Trump put Taiwan at the center of international news by taking a phone call from President Tsai Ing-wen, which was reportedly set up by people connected to Trump.
Anyway, we still found news that other English-language media skipped or didn’t notice a few days. Our New Year’s resolution is to get more breaking and entertaining news to you in 2017.
- It wouldn’t be another year in Taiwan without news of the long-delayed Airport MRT line still not being opened. Really, it’ll be open in 2017, they swear.
- We found some laowai trying to camp out at Taoyuan International Airport recently. They weren’t just sleeping on the benches or lounge chairs like normal travelers who transit through the airport overnight; they literally set up a tent in the terminal.
- It took local media more than a week to cover the incident of a young woman who died at a private party at the W Hotel.
- A fire destroyed and/damaged some of the bars in Ximending, the heart of Taipei’s gay community in August.
- A local politician in Chiayi was on the run when it was discovered that he was running a brothel that employed foreign transgender prostitutes, who were quite popular according to reports.
- There was also all of Uber’s problems in Taiwan. Yup, it’s still illegal and still operating.
- There was some wonderful police work, with investigators ruling that a man with multiple stab wounds to his abdomen as a suicide. But they did catch the bald man stealing shampoo.
- Of course, what year would be complete without more food safety issues?
- The tourism industry took some punches this year with airlines facing labor problems, a drop in tourist arrivals from mainland China following President Tsai Ing-wen’s election, and even higher ticket prices to visit Alishan.
- It wasn’t all bad news. Taipei and New Taipei opened even more YouBike stations and started offering free coffee to bike commuters on Fridays.
- Taiwan began exploring geothermal energy in Yilan and even opened the island’s first Atlantic salmon fishery.
- We even got to see Elvis Costello put on a solo show at the National Concert Hall while a typhoon edged south of Taipei.
Hope you enjoyed reading our stories this year and look forward to more in the future. Happy New Year!