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Education minister's ties to Chinese company denied

2018/04/19 21:35:24

Taipei, April 19 (CNA) The former general manager of Advanced Superconducting Technologies (AST), previously a Taiwanese partner company of China's Western Superconducting Technologies (WST) Co., Ltd. but no longer operational, issued an apology to Taiwan's newly appointed Minister of Education Wu Maw-kuen (吳茂昆) Thursday for confusion about his affiliation with the company, which has led some to question his appointment.

Since the premier announced the appointment of Wu to the top position at the Ministry of Education (MOE), the Academia Sinica academician has been embroiled in scandals.

Wu has been accused of having ties to multiple Chinese businesses and other entities. One such claim by Lo Chih-chiang (羅智強), former deputy secretary-general of the Presidential Office, was that he consulted for China's WST, which produces and sells titanium alloy products.

On Thursday evening, AST's former General Manager Chen Hui-tang (陳輝堂) posted a statement through the MOE addressing Lo's claim.

According to Chen, Wu was a guest of AST at a function it held at the Howard Plaza Hotel Taipei for the visit of a high-ranking official of WST.

This was Wu's only interaction with anyone from WST, if it can even be called an interaction, Chen's statement said.

Furthermore, Chen noted, much in line with Wu's previous statement, that WST habitually listed AST board members and consultants as their own, which is why his name appeared in the Chinese company's files.

Despite these allegations, Wu assumed the post of minister earlier in the day and will be expected to immediately address the issue of Kuan Chung-ming's (管中閔) selection as president of National Taiwan University which led to the resignation of his predecessor Pan Wen-chung (潘文忠).

(By Chen Chih-chung and Kuan-lin Liu)
Enditem/AW