Cabinet approves draft law to cope with virus impact

02/20/2020 12:37 PM

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Taipei, Feb. 20 (CNA) The Cabinet approved Thursday a draft law designed to cope with the impact of the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak.

Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) said the Cabinet will put forth a NT$60 billion (US$2 billion) special budget bill for the plan next week.

The proposal, to be financed through tax surpluses from previous fiscal years, includes measures that will help areas most affected by the outbreak, such as the restaurant/beverage sector, tourism and transportation.

It will also provide subsidies to medical personnel involved in epidemic prevention efforts, as well as tax breaks to companies that are willing to pay their employees if they have to undergo quarantine.

Also included in the plan is increased penalties for individuals who disseminate false information regarding the epidemic.

Violators will face prison terms of up to three years or fines of up to NT$3 million under the Communicable Disease Control Act.

The plan will be sent to the Legislative Yuan and if passed, will be in effect until the end of June next year.

(By Ku Chuan and Chiang Yi-ching)

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