In response to growing calls for a Taiwanese-language public television, the Ministry of Culture has promised to push harder for the passage of the proposed Development Act of National Languages (國家語言發展法).
Following the establishment of a “Development of National Languages (國家語言發展科)” section at the Department of Humanities & Publications last year, the Ministry has been working to promote the preservation, revitalization, and development of Taiwan’s linguistic diversity through law.
Apart from Mandarin Chinese, the languages used in Taiwan also include Taiwanese, Hakka, and native languages of the aboriginal tribes.
So far, six public hearings have been held on Taiwan proper and several outlying islands to gather advice from different fields as the draft Act is amended. The Act currently awaits one more public hearing before the final, public-approved draft is submitted to Executive Yuan for review.
The draft includes a clause stipulating the right to have access to mass media in one’s native language.
Culture Minister Cheng Li-chiun has sought to revise the Public Television Act since she took office last year. As discussions concerning the draft amendment of the Public Television Act and related policies will soon be held, the Ministry will hold meetings based on the outcome of such discussions.
The Ministry is hopeful that the Taiwan Broadcasting System, a public broadcasting group that supervises Public Television Service, will consider offering a Taiwanese-language channel or propose other possible methods for providing Taiwanese-language services.
Further information regarding Taiwanese-language services will be announced following the Public Television Act draft amendment meetings in June and July.
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