Sunday, December 10, 2006

Olympics 2020: Chinese Taipei ?!?

What’s in a name? Well, when it comes to the official name of Taiwan during international sports competitions or meetings it’s certainly a matter of concern. Deeply concerned is China, of course, which does not want to tolerate any name for the Taiwan delegations that might suppose some sort of independence. Taiwan, or the Republic of China I should say, can and does participate in several international organizations under it’s own title, usually Chinese Taipei. If you want to see a backgrounder on this messy naming business go here:

So why bring it up now? Well, with London winning its bid for the 2012 Olympics, the fever seems to have caught on here in Taiwan. Premier Hsieh took people off guard when he suggested openly that Taiwan be in the running for hosting the Olympics in 2020! Well good luck getting this past China my overly optimistic friend! (By the way, I was surprised to hear this coming from his mouth when the outspoken Vice-President Lu is known more for these kinds of pipe dreams.)

What’s worse is that Vancouver’s mayor has backed the Premier up by saying Vancouver would endorse Taiwan’s future bid. Oh oh! I can just see the bans and boycotts Beijing has got planned for Vancouver! Ban that salmon! My guess is that the mayor was just being nice, grinning and nodding in agreement while really in doubt.

At the end of the Hsieh article it quotes a spokesperson as saying:
"Every city in Taiwan has the chance," the spokesman said. "I would encourage everybody to do their best to fight for the representation of Taiwan and go for the 2020 Olympic Games."
My money’s on poor JiaYi, identified as my students as perhaps the most boring place in Taiwan. God knows they could you use the tourism and infrastructure! Posted by Picasa
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