Taiwan to ration water for 1 million households due to drought

iStock [For illustration]

Taiwan will from next month ration water for more than one million households in the centre of the island because of a drought.

However, the technology hub of Hsinchu will not be affected, Economy Minister Wang Mei-hua said on Wednesday.

Sub-tropical Taiwan is experiencing its worst drought in half a century, after rain-soaking typhoons failed to make landfall last year, with shortages most severe across a swathe of western Taiwan, where most people live.

Wang told reporters that from April 4, water supplies in parts of Taichung and Miaoli would be cut for two days every week, with water tankers being sent out to supply residents as needed.

Hsinchu, home to companies like Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co Ltd (TSMC), the world's largest contract chip manufacturer with clients including Apple Inc and Qualcomm Inc, would not be affected, she added.

Hsinchu's reservoirs are low but its supplies are being topped up by water being piped in from Taipei where water levels are plentiful, and also by desalination.

TSMC, in a statement to Reuters, said it maintained "contingency plans for each stage of the government's water restrictions".

Wang said that tech production zones in Taichung would not see their production affected either as they were excluded from water rationing though would have supplies reduced.

The government is hoping the "plum rains" season, which usually starts from around next month, will help replenish reservoirs, and that typhoons would hit Taiwan this year. But in the meantime, it has been seeding clouds and digging wells.

Wang said it was hoped the rains came back and restrictions can be lifted. "But in reality, this is not something we can control," she added.

More from International

Coming Up on Dubai Eye

  • Lunch with Lloyd

    11:00am - 2:00pm

    No one knows entertainment better than veteran Dubai broadcaster Mark Lloyd.

  • Afternoons with Helen Farmer

    2:00pm - 5:00pm

    Every weekday afternoon, Helen Farmer will help you to navigate the highs and lows of life in the UAE. Stay up to date with what’s happening and where to go.

BUSINESS BREAKFAST LATEST

On Dubai Eye

  • Meet Gift, female food delivery driver

    Gift came here from Nigeria and failed to find a job, until a pizza company offered her one. She's now one of the very few female delivery drivers in the UAE.

  • FARMER'S KITCHEN

    Farmer's Kitchen is back for 2021!
    With our partners Spinneys, we are going to help you wave goodbye to boring dinners, cluttered fridges, and lumpy leftovers!