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Taiwan: Statute on Development of Biotech, New Pharmaceutical Enterprises

(Nov. 2, 2007) On July 4, 2007, the 13-article Statute for Development of Biotechnology and New Pharmaceutical Enterprises was promulgated in Taiwan, to provide incentives to companies in that sector. According to Academia Sinica President Wong Chi-huey, the legislation is "important and timely" and represents "a new foundation that would rapidly boost the industry" instead […]

China: Law of Civil Procedure Amended

(Nov. 2, 2007) On October 28, 2007, the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress passed amendments to China's Law of Civil Procedure, the first revision of the law since its adoption in 1991. Two of the key changes are to facilitate applications for a retrial and to increase the effectiveness of execution of judgments. […]

China: Implementation of Court Rulings

(Nov. 2, 2007) It was reported on September 26, 2007, that China's Supreme People's Court (SCP), Supreme People's Procuratorate (SPP), and Ministry of Public Security (MPS) recently jointly issued the Circular on Problems Related to Seriously Investigating and Punishing Criminal Acts of Refusing to Implement Judgments or Rulings and of Violently Resisting Court Enforcement. The […]

Italy: Iraq Murder Case Against U.S. Soldier Dismissed

(Nov. 2, 2007) On October 25, 2007, an Italian trial court dismissed a criminal case against U.S. Army Specialist Mario Lozano, who was charged with the murder in Iraq of Italian intelligence agent Nicola Calipari and the attempted murder of agent Andrea Carpani and Italian journalist Giuliana Sgrena. The court cited lack of jurisdiction over […]

Kenya: State Funding for Political Parties

(Nov. 2, 2007) The Kenyan Parliament recently adopted a bill on political parties, under which, for the first time, the state will provide state funding to political parties. The bill prescribes that a new Office of the Register of Political Parties will be responsible not only for registering and funding, but also for regulating the […]

Nepal: Key Elections Postponed

(Nov. 2, 2007) On October 5, 2007, Nepalese officials announced that the scheduled November 22 elections had been postponed for at least three, and possibly as long as six, months. The delay was caused by the failure of the coalition interim government and Maoists to reach agreement over the fate of the monarchy and the […]

China: New Urban and Rural Planning Law

(Nov. 2, 2007) The Standing Committee of the National People's Congress adopted a new Law on Urban and Rural Planning on October 28, 2007. When it enters into effect on January 1, 2008, the current 1989 Urban Planning Law will be abolished. "Urban and rural planning" refers to city-town system planning, city planning, town planning, […]

Taiwan: Press Freedom Ranking Improved

(Nov. 2, 2007) According to the Worldwide Press Freedom Index 2007, issued by the international, Paris-Based press organization Reporters Without Borders, Taiwan is rated highest among its Asian neighbors in press freedom in 2007 and No. 32 worldwide. Among the other 168 countries that comprise the Index, Japan was ranked No. 37; the United States, […]

China: Rural Healthcare Guidelines

(Nov. 2, 2007) On September 10, 2007, China's Ministries of Health and Finance and the State Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine jointly issued new guidelines on the management of the rural cooperatives' medical program, which was inaugurated in 2002. Under the existing scheme, the central and local governments contribute 40 yuan to an insurance fund […]

Niger: Reporters Without Borders Seeks Journalist’s Release

(Nov. 2, 2007) Moussa Kaka, director of the private Radio Saraounia and a correspondent in Niger of Radio France Internationale (RFI) and of the international, nonprofit, journalist rights organization Reporters Without Borders, was arrested on September 20, 2007, and is being held in detention. Kaka may be charged with breaching national security and his arrest […]