National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan of the United States met with Director Yang Jiechi of the general office of the Central Foreign Affairs Commission, Chinese Communist Party, unannounced in Luxembourg for 4.5 hours. This was the third time that the two had talks this year. The defense ministers had just met in Singapore from June 10 to June 12, while Sullivan and Yang made a special trip to meet. The timing of the meeting garnered attention.
Safeway OA Supply Company, which sells printer cartridges, is suspected of supplying subpar products by mainland Chinese manufacturers in place of Flowflex rapid test kits manufactured and imported from the United States. The nearly 2 million doses sold yielded no test response. The Investigation Bureau, Ministry of Justice, launched an investigation after receiving complaints.
Huang Nan-ching, the chief executive, was detained with no visitation rights, while Chu Shou-hui, the principal, was released on a NT$1 million (about US$33,650) bail pending prosecution. The Food and Drug Administration, Ministry of Health and Welfare, immediately banned the import and sale of this product, and businesses were asked to recall it. Due to remaining uncertainties, both ruling and opposition party legislators demanded a thorough investigation.
According to a Bloomberg News report on June 13, when they met with their American counterparts in recent months, Chinese officials repeatedly claimed that Taiwan Strait is not international waters, raising concerns in the administration of President Joe Biden. In a June 13 press conference, Spokesman Wang Wenbin of the mainland China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that China has sovereignty rights and jurisdiction in the Taiwan Strait and at the same time respects the lawful rights of other countries in relevant waters. Wang also said that China is firmly against the claim of certain countries that Taiwan Strait is international waters.
The National Development Council announced that Taiwan ranked 7 among 63 countries in the 2022 Global Competitiveness Report published by the International Institute for Management Development in Switzerland, an improvement of 1 place from last year and the highest ranking since 2013. For an economy with a population of more than 20 million, Taiwan has ranked first globally for two consecutive years.
A new quarantine system of 3+4 days for travelers entering Taiwan took effect, reducing the duration of self-isolation from seven days to three days, followed by four days of self-epidemic prevention to be completed at the same location as self-isolation. However, for the latter four days, an individual may obtain the consent of the local government to change locations once and quarantine at his own residence or with family. Due to vagueness, the new quarantine regulations have caused confusion and controversy.
After mainland China banned the import of the Taiwan grouper from June 13, Spokesman Ma Xiaoguang of the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council stated that a packaged sample of chilled white hairtail from a frozen food company in Keelung tested positive for the coronavirus (COVID-19). Import was suspended for one week until June 16.
The Central Bank Board of Governors decided to raise the interest rate by 0.125 percentage points and deposit reserve ratio by 0.25 percentage points, effective June 17. The Central Bank also lowered the economic growth estimate for the year to 3.75 percent and raised consumer price increase to 2.83 percent for the year.
The Federal Reserve announced June 15 that it would raise interest rates by 0.75 percentage points, increasing the benchmark interest rate to between 1.5 to 1.75 percent. The largest rate increase since 1994 is meant to combat the most serious inflation in four decades.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Ministry of Health and Welfare, held an expert meeting and decided to approve the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use authorization (EUA) for children aged six months to five years old, with two doses per child and a 28-day interval between the doses. There are about 900,000 young children in this age group, and inoculation will start in July. The FDA also issued EUA for the Novavax vaccine for people over 18 years old, with two doses per individual with a 3-week interval between the doses.
The People's Liberation Army Type 003 aircraft carrier was launched and named "Fujian." According to the Xinhua News Agency, this is China's first self-made catapult-type aircraft carrier. It has a straight and long flight deck and is equipped with an electromagnetic catapult system (EMALS). The full-load displacement is more than 80,000 tons and is expected to enter service in 2025.
At present, the USS Ford is the only aircraft carrier equipped with electromagnetic catapult technology. According to analysis, the Fujian is the latest and greatest aircraft carrier of the mainland Chinese navy and is expected to carry the latest J-35 twin-engine fighter jets to match the F-35C fighter jets of the United States.