As the on-going investigation of the 15 day-disruption of New Tang Dynasty’s Asia Pacific Television (NTDTV) signals in Taiwan continues, Chunghwa Telecom, through which NTDTV’s Asia Pacific signals are broadcast, is suspected of being maneuvered into collaboration with the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) over business interests.
NTDTV's signal experienced disruption and eventual outage leading up to the 60th anniversary of the People's Republic of China on Oct. 1.
Chunghwa collaborates with three major mainland Chinese telecommunication carriers in multiple projects such as 3G service and sub-marine cable communications. A number of Taiwanese legislators have said that this type of cross-strait business collaboration is a serious national security issue, and should not be allowed to occur among the nation’s leading telecom operators.
Earlier this year Chunghwa announced its future development plan, which is projecting 80 percent of the overseas investment in the next five years to be focused on China.
Since July of 2008, Chunghwa’s chairman, Lu Shyue-Ching, has visited China several times and met with the Wang Jianzhou, China Mobile’s president, Chang Xiaobing, China Unicom’s president, and Wang Xiaochu, China Telecom’s president.
On the 26th, Taiwan’s National Communications Commission (NCC) received the second investigative report from Chunghwa on NTDTV’s Asia Pacific signal disruption from September 17 through October 2. Taiwanese legislator Lo Shu-Lei indicated that the two-page report from Chunghwa Telecom is too brief to have been a sufficient internal investigation, and has called for the NCC to request an additional report.
Lo also believes that if the CCP is indeed actively involved in pressuring Chunghwa over business interests and in fact causing the disruption of the signal of NTDTV’s programming in Taiwan, it is not only disrespectful and a violation of Taiwanese law, but it crosses over a line that should not be crossed, which is a violation of Taiwan’s sovereignty.
She stresses, “In Taiwan, Taiwan’s law applies. If they [the Chinese communists] govern here, that is going overboard. Taiwan has always been sovereign and independent. If Chunghwa Telecom has been restrained by them [the CCP] because of business development in China and in return Chunghwa interferes with press freedom (in Taiwan), how could we allow it?”
While Chunghwa ’s investment plan is not anticipated to meet much regulatory resistance from Taiwanese legislators, there is a growing concern over the fact that its three major collaborators in China are in fact state-owned and controlled directly by the central committee of the Communist Party. All personnel at the management level, from the presidents to the engineers, are documented, appointed, and approved by China’s State Council. The presidents of all three carriers have official positions in the CCP. Wang Jianzhou, for instance, is a Party Secretary at China Mobile and a member of the National Committee of the CPPCC (Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference).
Another Taiwanese legislator, Yeh Yi-Jin says, “We cannot allow this to happen, and the Congress certainly will conduct a thorough investigation.”
Tsai Huang-Liang, another Taiwanese lawmaker, believes that telecommunication is an industry that should be under national protection, and says that the collaboration between Chunghwa and carriers from across the strait is a national security issue, and should have been reported as such to Taiwan’s National Security Council.
How to avoid the CCP stretching its power to Taiwan in the name of business collaboration has become a serious issue in the face of telecommunications collaboration across the straits. Standing between business interests in China, and the Chinese communists’ record on censorship, many foreign investors waver between moral integrity and profits.
The most recent and vivid example of this may be the forced installation of “Green Dam Youth Escort” software in PCs sold in China: Although HP and Dell have persistently refused to cooperate, other PC manufacturers in Asia, such as Acer, Lenovo, Sony and Asus, once installed the software in all of their PCs to be sold to Chinese customers.
In an official statement, NTDTV Asia Pacific stresses that the CCP has suppressed NTDTV on the international stage with multiple tactics in recent years due to its independent and in-depth coverage of sensitive issues in China. In particular, these include democracy, freedom, human rights, widespread protests, corruption, injustice to Taiwanese businessmen, and the persecutions of China’s minority ethnic groups, underground churches, and Falun Gong.
The statement also points out that Chunghwa Telecom should adhere to its contract. However, since the signal disruption, Chunghwa ’s evident lack of initiative in investigating the issue, and failure to find the cause, have led to reasonable suspicion whether or not Chunghwa is under pressure or amenable to CCP intervention with NTDTV’s signal, in exchange for business profits.
Since the signal disruption in Taiwan, Chunghwa Telecom failed to proactively provide any backup plan to resolve the issue. According to NTDTV, Chunghwa expressed the wish for NTDTV to switch to another carrier.
Read the original Chinese article .
Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.