Seven more foreign news outlets have applied to open bureaus in Taiwan this year, including the New York Times, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Friday, following China’s expulsion of US journalists in March.
After the US placed a personnel cap on four Chinese media companies, China responded by banning US reporters for the New York Times, the Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal from covering news from China, Hong Kong and Macau.
“We maintain bureaus in Beijing and Shanghai with correspondents, and are hopeful that the Chinese government will allow all of our reporters to return,” New York Times spokeswoman Danielle Rhoades Ha said in an e-mail to the Taipei Times.
“As a result of the expulsion order, some affected correspondents are in the process of relocating to Taipei and Seoul. Our newsroom has not missed a beat and continues to cover China fairly and aggressively,” she said.
“It’s great having @nytimes reporters in #Taiwan. Our vibrant international media landscape is much the richer for their presence,” Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) wrote on Twitter on Friday. “Welcome & enjoy the country’s freedom in producing all the news that’s fit to print!”
Ministry spokeswoman Joanne Ou (歐江安) said that the ministry has also welcomed the Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal to establish branches in Taiwan, although they have not formally submitted requests.
Including the new applications, 59 foreign news outlets are stationed in Taiwan from 16 nations: France, Germany, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, the Netherlands, Norway, the Philippines, Singapore, Slovakia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the UK and the US, she said.
The number of foreign journalists in Taiwan has increased in the past few years, as the nation’s press freedom has been praised by the global community, she added.
Before the nation’s presidential and legislative elections on Jan. 11, more than 210 foreign journalists, including nearly 60 originally stationed in Taiwan, had applied for permits to cover the elections, the ministry said.