The Chinese language media Phoenix Television will close its office in Taiwan in May, after Taiwan’s Ministry of Economic Affairs found the media violated the investment prerequisite for those outside the country.
On April 6, the Minister of Economic Affairs Mei-Hua Wang explained that in 2021, the ministry identified Phoenix TV as a China-owned media due to its shareholding structural changes, and demanded correction within six months.
According to the investment regulations on shareholders who are outside the country, when more than 30 percent of shares are held by Chinese individuals or institutes it shall be deemed to be a Chinese-owned investment.
Wang explained that the current market is not open to the China-owned media. Therefore, the ministry notified Phoenix on Sept. 15, 2021, of its failure to keep a cap of 30 percent investment from China, and demanded the media address the issue within six months.
According to the ministry, a fine of more than $3469.36 was imposed for the violation.
The ministry’s Investment Commission explained to the Chinese edition of The Epoch Times that Phoenix TV decided to close its Taiwan branch, and made a request in December to extend the time for placement of its employees and relevant matters to May 14.
The Investment Commission of the ministry told The Epoch Times that Phoenix TV’s ownership in 2001 was in line with the regulation when the media applied its operation in Taiwan, until 2021 when the media sold part of its ownership to Bauhinia Culture (Hong Kong) Holdings, a Chinese state-owned enterprise.
The Hong Kong-based Phoenix TV began broadcasting on 31 March, 1996. According to its website, Phoenix has settled in different regions, and owns properties in Hong Kong, Shenzhen, London, Los Angeles, and Beijing.
Mary Hong contributed to this report.