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Improving people's sense of happiness key government goal: official

2012/04/14 21:59:46

Taipei, April 14 (CNA) The government will continue to work toward reducing the people's sense of suffering and enhance their sense of happiness, Executive Yuan spokesman Philip Yang said Saturday.

Yang said the public is still in a stage of adjustment following the shock of having to face stiff hikes in the prices of gasoline recently and impending electricity rate hikes in mid-May.

"For the long-term development of Taiwan and continued improvement of the life and quality of the people, the government will listen to views from all walks of life as a reference in improving its policy-making process," Yang said.

His remarks came after a Gallup survey showed that 5.3 percent of Taiwanese respondents to the polling company's latest survey on well-being were classified as "suffering" in 2011. That was down 3 percentage points from 2010.

In other parts of East Asia, the suffering "index" was 5.3 percent in Singapore, 6.2 percent in Malaysia, 6.5 percent in South Korea, 9.4 percent in Indonesia, 9.68 percent in Japan, 12 percent in China, and 13.9 percent in Hong Kong.

Thailand, at 1.0 percent, was the Asian country with the lowest number of respondents considered to be "suffering."

"Enhancing the happiness of people's lives is a goal the government is striving to meet," Yang said.

Yang noted that the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics is studying how to put together a survey on gauging the happiness of Taiwan's people.

(By Angela Tsai and Lilian Wu)