Thursday, April 15, 2010

Baseball is big in Taiwan, as is the sporting industry. They have a great history, with Little League championships and a Silver Medal in the Olympics. A lot of sporting equipment is made there, and exported around the world. Baseball is not just a sport, but a culture. Lately, that culture has been rocked with gambling and game fixing, and several players and coaches have been banned from the league. In addition to that, teams have folded. The Chinese Professional Baseball League is in danger of collapsing, and the government doesn't like it, and feels that it is a problem:
As baseball is not only the national sport but also a core sporting industry in Taiwan, the collapse of the country's professional baseball league could cause 30,000 people to lose their jobs, Sports Affairs Council (SAC) Minister Tai Hsia-ling said Wednesday.
In order to provide help for the game itself, the government will do the following:
According to Tai, the SAC has mapped out a plan to help resolve unemployment among retired baseball players.

The government also plans to set up 12 amateur baseball teams in the coming four years.
Not to forget the business side, which affect many more people than the game by itself:
The sports sector has received less favorable treatment than many industries in Taiwan, she said, but added that after the launch of the Taiwan Sports Lottery in 2008, an estimated NT$2.4 billion (US$75.95 million) from it will be used to promote sports this year.

Tai also said she will do what she can to foster the development of the sports industry, create more jobs for former athletes and provide preferential loans for them. She said she hoped never to have to see athletes on TV calling on the government to give them jobs.
This is just an plan to help baseball in Taiwan. It's an entire governmental fiscal program:
To encourage people to exercise regularly, the government will increase the annual budget for sports from NT$4 to NT$28 per capita and has already allocated NT$400 million toward a program aimed at building Taiwan into a sports island, Tai said. 
The government will also issue a sports IC card to promote the industry and is scheduled to complete the construction and connection of around-the-island cycling trails in 2013, Tai added
I'm normally against government being involved in baseball, but it is more an industry than a sport. The U.S. government enacts favorable legislation to help all manners of American industry, as does any country. This should be good for the economy, and good for the citizens. Hopefully it will also be good for the league.

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