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Taiwan inaugurates Ministry of Digital Affairs, strives to ‘Free the Future’

The much-heralded Ministry of Digital Affairs (moda) was inaugurated in Aug. 27, a milestone initiative advancing Taiwan’s efforts to build digital resilience and "Free the Future."

This new ministry, also known as moda, is committed to be the "motor" expedites the digital development in Taiwan, said Minister Audrey Tang of moda in her inauguration speech. The ministry is aimed to build digital resilience for all, connect the digital technologies with civil affairs, strengthen industrial competitiveness and cybersecurity practices, accelerate social digital development and realize the vision of a smart country, she added.

The core mission of moda lies in "resilience," entailing building the civil digital resilience in social inclusion, industrial transformation and adaptive resilience by responding to the requirements of social development, industrial development and emergency response with the utilization of digital means, Tang said.

According to Tang, the "National Institute of Cyber Security" is expected to be established by the end of this year in response to the moda's growing business. The moda will continue to recruit top-flight talent from the private sector through a more flexible hiring mechanism. Formal trappings of education such as diplomas should not stand in the way of finding the right people, she said.

Following the inauguration ceremony, Tang accompanied President Tsai Ing-wen and Premier Su Tseng-chang on a tour of the moda building on Yanping South Road in Taipei City. She signed off on the ministry’s first electronic document using mobile phone verification, an example of how the moda is leading the way in digital transformation.

Congratulatory "Free the Future" messages are pouring in from Taiwan-stationed foreign envoys and like-minded partners who appeared on Tang’s video podcast show Innovative Minds–co-produced by government-sponsored English streaming platform TaiwanPlus. Among them are Sandra Oudkirk, director of the American Institute in Taiwan; Hiroyasu Izumi, Chief Representative of the Japan-Taiwan Exchange Association Taipei Office; Austrine Armonaite, Lithuanian minister of economy and innovation; Carlos Jose Fleitas Rodriguez,ambassador of South America ally Paraguay; YouTube co-founder Steve Chen and the "father of the Internet in Japan" Murai Jun.

"Free the Future" is a catchphrase personally designed by Tang. It encapsulates the moda's core philosophy that nothing is set in stone, and all possibilities can be realized with commitment, courage, self-belief and vision.

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