Taiwan will increase sports exchanges with Southeast Asian countries in line with the government's "new southbound policy," the Sports Administration said Thursday.
This will be one of three strategies to promote the government policy, the other two being to encourage new immigrants and migrant workers to take part in local sports meets and increase exchanges with sporting officials from other countries.
Wang Han-chung (???), chief secretary of the administration, cited as an example plans to invite Filipino basketball teams to Taiwan early next year, noting that the Philippines excels at the sport.
Wang said that Filipino basketball players could come as early as March when the Taiwan's High School Basketball League season ends.
He also said that the 2018 Asian Games will be held in Jakarta, Indonesia and as that country is particularly good at badminton, "we could invite players to Taiwan or send Taiwanese competitors to be trained there."
Taiwan will also encourage its many foreign workers and brides to take part in local sports meets.
"Foreign migrants could form a team themselves to take part in local sports meets," he said.
Noting that separk takraw (??) and kabaddi (??? ) are popular in Southeast Asian countries, Wang also expressed the hope that the national High School Athletic Meet, National Intercollegiate Athletic Games or National Sports Meet could invite foreign migrants to demonstrate the sports which are less well known in Taiwan.
Wang said the administration's program to promote the "new southbound policy" will be launched next year with a budget of NT$72.7 million (US$2.3 million).
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel