1. To improve the management effectiveness of tobacco and alcohol and the benefits of their execution, taking into account both legal and practical aspects, the NTA has added, amended or deregulated laws and regulations regarding tobacco and alcohol as follows.
(1) To protect the consumer, ensure the safety of alcohol consumption, meet international standards, and take into account the practical needs of alcohol management, the Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Health and Welfare on December 27, 2016 jointly amended “The Hygiene Standards for Alcohol Products” where the limits of methyl alcohol in grape wine and sweet potato-distilled spirits were adjusted. Rules were also added regarding preservatives, the limit of residues left after the same alcohol is added with mixed preservatives, and how to judge whether preservatives have exceeded the limit.
(2) Some Articles in the Criminal Code of the Republic of China, which stipulate that confiscation of objects belonging to non-offenders should be limited to only contraband, may affect the efficacy of the investigation into the seizure of illegal tobacco and alcohol products. The amendments to Articles 57 and 59 of the Tobacco and Alcohol Administration Act were thus promulgated by the President on December 27, 2017. These stipulate that the said objects should be confiscated without referring to their ownership. The amendments came into force from the day of promulgation.
(3) To encourage people to actively report major illegal alcohol and tobacco cases, the MOF amended the “Regulations Governing Rewards for Informing or Discovering Offenses of Illegal Tobacco or Alcohol” on March 28, 2019, and increased the rate of awards to 30% for those who report non-online violating cases regarding illegal tobacco and alcohol products. The MOF also added whistleblower terms and increased the award rate to 45% for whistleblowers who are current or former employees of the violator. The maximum reward amount per case is limited to NT$6 million. In addition, in consideration of the prosecutor’s neutral and supervisory role, the MOF added the provision that the prosecutor may not receive awards for the investigation and seizure of illegal alcohol and tobacco. The amendments came into force from the date of promulgation.
(4) To encourage the emerging industries to innovate and ensure the safety of alcohol, the MOF promulgated the supplemental interpretive rule that the pre-immersion work of a bartender under certain conditions is regarded as blending alcohol drink for immediate consumption. A business that complies with the rules may be deemed as an alcohol drink seller and need not obtain the producer’s license.
(5) To adapt to the current situations and meet the practical needs of industry, the MOF announced an interpretive rule stating that teaching activities held by a business may be exempt from the punishment of producing illegal alcohol pursuant to Paragraph 1 of Article 45 of “The Tobacco and Alcohol Administration Act” regardless if the course requires extra fees. The rule requires that every student produce less than 5 liters of alcohol product which is distributed to students immediately after the course; in addition, no illegal alcohol can be used. The materials for the course must meet the hygiene standards for food or alcohol products.
(6) In order to comply with the Administrative Penalty Act and to prevent inbound passengers from illegally carrying excessive amounts of tobacco and alcohol, Articles 6, 19-1, and 45 of “Directions for the Handling of Seizures and Accusations for Tobacco and Alcohol-Related Products” were promulgated; Articles 6 and 19-1 took effect on October 5, 2020, and Article 45 took effect on January 1, 2021.
(7) To minimize the impact on the bartending industry resulting from the pandemic, and to protect the rights of the consumers, the MOF announced a decree on June 17, 2021 that bartenders may provide services under certain given conditions such as the consumption of short-term packaged drinks, etc.
(8) In order to strengthen the security protection for the personal information files of alcohol and tobacco industry, partial amendments to the “Regulations Governing Personal Information File Security Maintenance and Administration of Alcohol and Tobacco Industry” were made on October 26, 2021, stipulating additionally both the reporting requirements, in which whom to report, when to report, what to report, and the following administrative examination should a leakage of the said personal information happen are regulated; and the enforcement dates that Article 18-1 shall enter into force 6 months after the promulgation, while Articles 3 and 7 on the promulgation date.
2. The MOF introduced the Alcohol Quality Certification System in 2003. Any commercial alcohol must pass qualification reviews, be evaluated on the scene, be subjected to sampling, and be submitted to the certification technical committee for approval before it can receive certification. Then it is subject to regular follow-up examinations to ensure the quality and hygiene of the alcohol. To help these small certified wineries, the “Development Plan on Certificated Alcohol Industry” was announced on June 30, 2017, that consolidates the administrative resources of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Transportation and Communications, and the Council of Agriculture, Executive Yuan, to help certified domestic wineries develop international markets. Furthermore, the MOF has promulgated the plan for 2020 to 2022 on November 19, 2019, aiming to increase recognition of the “Logo of Certified Alcohol,” improve the international competitiveness of domestic alcohol products, and build up the capability of small-and-medium size producers. The consolidation of government resources to achieve these targets aims to stimulate the growth of our alcohol industry. Some of the certified alcohols that were recommended by the MOF have been awarded 25 medals at the 2021 San Francisco World Spirits Competition. For all certified alcohols, the MOF also hosted a tasting competition and a following presentation and award ceremony, combined with a banquet for the first time, to effectively boost the reputation of these certified alcohols.
1. Improve the management effectiveness of tobacco and alcohol.
2. Protect the safety and rights of tobacco and alcohol consumers.
3. Protect the rights of people legally engaging in the trade.
4. Stop the acts of illegal tobacco and alcohol.
5. Simplify and relax the tobacco and alcohol laws to make them easier for the public.
6. Foster the steady development of certified businesses.