Executive Yuan announces organizational structure of Post-Disaster Reconstruction Council

  • Date: 2009-08-19

The task force of the Executive Yuan’s Post-Disaster Reconstruction Council held its first meeting on August 19, with Premier Liu Chao-shiuan acting as the convener and announcing the council’s organizational structure. The council will include Vice Premier Chiu Cheng-hsiung as deputy convener; Minister without Portfolio Tsai Hsung-hsiung as chief executive officer; and Minister of the Veterans Affairs Commission Kao Hua-chu, who will oversee the council’s office located in disaster areas and serve as leading deputy executive officer. The other two deputy executive officers are Vice Minister of the Interior Lin Join-sane and Deputy Minister of the Public Construction Commission Chern Jenn-chuan. Liu said the typhoon-ravaged areas of Tainan City, Tainan County, Taitung County, Nantou County, Chiayi County, and Kaohsiung County all have already set up local post-disaster reconstruction councils. In the near future, similar organizations will also be established in Yunlin County and Pingtung County. Liu said he expected national council Chief Executive Officer Tsai to handle the coordination and establishment of an office in southern Taiwan immediately after the meeting. That office is scheduled to take over the relief operations currently handled by the Typhoon Morakot Southern Emergency Rescue Center, which is led by Minister of the Interior Liao Liou-yi. In addition, Liu said that the national-level reconstruction council would soon take over the assignments of the Central Emergency Operations Center to ensure that relief work smoothly transitions from rescue operations to relocation and then to reconstruction. The premier stressed that in order to better coordinate the resources of all relevant government agencies, the council will initially set up 12 sections, which will be organized according to the functions of their respective component agencies. In the future, Liu added, the sections will be reorganized in line with the nature of different disaster relief and reconstruction projects. Liu pointed out that the most important project at the moment is the development of a national land conservation plan. The Council for Economic Planning and Development has already mapped out a preliminary overview for land conservation. The land conservation plan will include regional reconstruction schemes for the typhoon-devastated areas and provide guidance for future reconstruction work. In addition to land conservation, the plan will cover infrastructure development, rebuilding and industrial revitalization. In the area of infrastructure reconstruction, the premier said that the Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) and Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) would be responsible for repairing roads, bridges and flood-control systems. To conduct the rebuilding part of the plan, a cross-agency team will be formed among the Ministry of the Interior, Council of Agriculture (COA), Council of Aboriginal Affairs, Council for Cultural Affairs (CCA), Public Construction Commission and other agencies related to economic affairs. The rebuilding part of the plan is aimed at rebuilding local industries and helping to develop new ones suited to the areas of southern Taiwan affected by the disaster. These industries could combine with the “six key emerging industries” the Executive Yuan is promoting, including tourism, high-end agriculture and the cultural and creative industries. The MOEA, COA, MOTC and CCA will be in charge of this plan. Tsai will be responsible for organizing four teams that will flesh out the details of the four parts of the plan in separate meetings. The goal of the four teams is to ensure that the reconstruction work stays on track. The premier also said the issues discussed in the meeting are those likely to be encountered when the focus shifts from rescue work—now provided by the Central Emergency Operations Center and Southern Emergency Rescue Center to the Post-Disaster Reconstruction Council—to reconstruction work, which will be overseen by the Post-Disaster Reconstruction Council. Resolving these transition issues, he said, should be achieved in a timely fashion to show the effectiveness of the team. (Source:Government Information Office, August 19, 2009)